First bimonthly seminar in Amman – 24 Jan. 2016

We have launched last Sunday our first thematic seminar. The aim of this series of seminar is to present ongoing research in the frame of Lajeh’s program. This seminar is not open to public and restricted to Lajeh’s team and research associate.

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Exile, Place, and Politics: Syria’s Transnational Civil War

Ali Hamdan


In the 21st century, it has become common to note that civil wars have come to represent the majority of armed conflicts worldwide. At the same time, the very concept of civil war – by definition a violent domestic conflict – is being transformed. Places are increasingly caught up in political currents extending beyond their borders. Syria’s civil war has become emblematic of such changes, and nowhere are these dynamics clearer than among the opposition to the Asad regime in Damascus. Indeed, the Syrian opposition has been deeply fragmented by Syria’s ongoing conflict, both by violence and expulsion to neighboring countries like Turkey, Lebanon, and Jordan. And yet, the opposition has been able to survive. This dissertation project investigates the transnational dynamics of civil war in the 21st century by examining Syrian opposition networks in Turkey and Jordan. It asks: 1) how has exile created new or built upon older social networks that strengthen opposition activity? And 2) how do these opposition networks or “assemblages” adapt these activities to specific contexts of exile? More specifically, it compares two such contexts, the cities of Gaziantep (in Turkey) and Amman (in Jordan), which act as hubs or “exile-capitals” for the Syrian opposition in exile. These questions are part of a broader investigation into the emergence, consolidation, and dynamics of particular places as hubs for transnational politics in civil war.

Sunday, January 24th, 2016