Matching Items (15)

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The Emotional Well-Being of Low-Wage Migrant Workers in Dubai

Description

This dissertation research examines the impact of migration on the emotional well-being of temporary, low-wage workers who migrate from the Global South to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

This dissertation research examines the impact of migration on the emotional well-being of temporary, low-wage workers who migrate from the Global South to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Unlike previous research in the UAE, this study’s sample reflects a far broader diversity of nationalities and occupations, and focuses on those earning in the lowest wage bracket. Their experiences revealed the systemic attributes of precarity and the violent structures that perpetuate them.

My research addresses several substantive debates. I found that rather than emigrating for rational reasons—as neoclassical theory of migration posits—the migrants in my study tended to rationalize their reasons for emigrating through processes of cognitive dissonance. Further, where previous scholarship has tended to conflate issues of national, ethnic, and racial discrimination, I disentangle the processes that motivate discriminatory behavior by showing how seemingly innocuous references to “nationality” can be driven by a desire to hide racial prejudices, while at the same time, conflating all as “racism” can reflect a simplistic analysis of the contributing factors. I show how past historical structures of colonialism and slavery are manifest in current forms of structural violence and how this violence is differentially experienced on the basis of nationality, perceived racial differences, and/or ethnicity. Additionally, my research expands theories related to the spatial dimension of discrimination. It examines how zones of marginalization shape the experiences of low-wage migrant workers as they move through or occupy these spaces. Marginalizing zones limit workers’ access to the sociality of the city and its institutional resources, which consequently increase their vulnerability.

Individual well-being is determined by stressful events that one encounters, by personal and external sources of resilience, and by perceptions of oneself and the stressful events. For the migrants in my study, their stressors were chronic, cumulative, and ambiguous, and while they brought with them a sufficient amount of personal resilience, it was often mitigated by non-compliance and lack of enforcement of UAE laws. The result was a state of well-being defined by isolation, fear, and despair.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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(Re) positioning Lebanese feminist discourse: a rhetorical study of Al-raida (Pioneer) journal, 1976-1985

Description

This study is a feminist historiography of Al-Raida, a Lebanese feminist journal introduced in 1976 by the Institute for Women's Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University.

This study is a feminist historiography of Al-Raida, a Lebanese feminist journal introduced in 1976 by the Institute for Women's Studies in the Arab World at the Lebanese American University. This study recovers foundations of modern Lebanese feminist discourses as they are articulated in the journal by employing Foucauldian CDA as a means to trace discourse strands, or conversations, which include Family Planning, development, politics and narratives of the Lebanese civil war. This study explores, by situating each discourse strand within dominant and local historical contexts, the shifting rhetorical function of the journal through various historical moments. Tracing the dominant discourse strands within the first decade of the journal, this study rhetorically analyzes the ways in which arguments are positioned, research studies are presented, and methodologies are employed to forge viable solutions to Middle Eastern women's issues. First, the study traces the conversation on Family Planning in Lebanon and its relevance to the economic and social situation during the late 70s. Second, the study presents the shift in the early 80s towards a discourse on development and explores how Al-Raida presents the issue of development, attempts to define it, and in doing so outlines some of the concerns at this time, including illiteracy, access to health care, access to paid employment, and women's access to developmental opportunities. Third, the study presents the discourse in the mid-80s on the civil war in Lebanon and highlights Al-Raida's rhetorical function by documenting trauma and war narratives through personal interviews, testimonies, and ethnographies. The shift in the methodologies of the research articles published in the first decade, from quantitative studies towards qualitative studies, indicates the journal is rhetorically situated within both the dominant international discourse and within the local context, exhibiting an ability to respond to the nuances in the local Lebanese women's movement while simultaneously maintaining international visibility.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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The development of Iraqi Shiʼa mourning rituals in modern Iraq: the ʻAshurā rituals and visitation of Al-Arbʻain

Description

This study is based on a submission of anthropological, historical, and literary approaches. The ethnographic study of the Shi'a holy shrines between November 2011 and January 2012 is based on

This study is based on a submission of anthropological, historical, and literary approaches. The ethnographic study of the Shi'a holy shrines between November 2011 and January 2012 is based on my visit to Iraq. The study lasted almost ten weeks, to include the two events under discussion: `Ashurā and Al-Arb`ain, in Karbala of that year. This thesis argues that the mourning rituals of `Ashurā and the Forty Day Visitation Zyarat Al-Arb`ain contribute to the social or individual life of Iraqi Shi'a. They also make significant contributions through creating a symbolic language to communicate for the community, as well as communicating with their essential symbolic structure. Second, the Forty Day Visitation Zyarat Al-Arb`ain is one of the most significant collective mourning rituals, one that expresses unity and solidarity of the Iraqi Shi'a community, and helps them to represent their collective power, and maintain their collective existence. This study uses two of Victor Turner's tripartite models. For `Ashurā the rite of passage rituals is used, which consists of the separation, margin, and re-aggregation phase. Through this process of entering and leaving time and social structure, it helps in changing the social status of the participants. The other model used for Al-Arb`ain is pilgrimage as a social process, which includes three levels of communitas: existential, normative, and ideological communitas. The Shi'a in Iraq are holding a position similar to Turner's notion of communitas since they are living within a society that is Muslim and yet even though they are a larger population of the society, they still become marginalized by the Sunni population socially, economically, and politically. Social relations and links play a significant role for Shi'a in `Ashurā and Al-Arb`ain as a reflection between their social status as an undefined communitas and the general structure of Iraqi society.

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Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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Building a pious self in secular settings: pious women in modern Turkey

Description

This dissertation aims to explore the diverse ways in which piety is conceptualized and cultivated by highly-educated Muslim women in Turkey. These women hold active positions within the secular-public sphere

This dissertation aims to explore the diverse ways in which piety is conceptualized and cultivated by highly-educated Muslim women in Turkey. These women hold active positions within the secular-public sphere while trying to keep their aim of becoming pious in their own way, in relation to their subjective understanding of piety. After a detailed analysis of the formation of the secular modern public sphere in Turkey, in relation to the questions of modernity, nation-building, secularism, Islamism, and the gender relations, it gives an account of the individual routes taken by the highly educated professional women to particular aspirations of piety. The individual stories are designed to show the arbitrariness of many modern binary oppositions such as modern vs. traditional, secular vs. religious, liberated vs. oppressed, individual vs. communal, and etc. These individual routes are also analyzed within a collective framework through an analysis of the activities of two women's NGO's addressing at their attempt of building a collective attitude toward the secular-liberal conception of gender and sexuality. Finally the dissertation argues that Turkey has the capacity to deconstruct the aforementioned binary categories with its macro-level sociopolitical experience, and the micro-level everyday life experiences of ordinary people. It also reveals that piety cannot be measured with outward expressions, or thought as a sociopolitical categorization. Because just like secularism, piety has also the capacity to penetrate into the everyday lives of people from diverse sociopolitical backgrounds, which opens up possibilities of rethinking the religious-secular divide, and all the other binaries that come with it.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2012

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The emotional well-being of low-wage migrant workers in Dubai

Description

This dissertation research examines the impact of migration on the emotional well-being of temporary, low-wage workers who migrate from the Global South to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

This dissertation research examines the impact of migration on the emotional well-being of temporary, low-wage workers who migrate from the Global South to Dubai in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Unlike previous research in the UAE, this study’s sample reflects a far broader diversity of nationalities and occupations, and focuses on those earning in the lowest wage bracket. Their experiences revealed the systemic attributes of precarity and the violent structures that perpetuate them.

My research addresses several substantive debates. I found that rather than emigrating for rational reasons—as neoclassical theory of migration posits—the migrants in my study tended to rationalize their reasons for emigrating through processes of cognitive dissonance. Further, where previous scholarship has tended to conflate issues of national, ethnic, and racial discrimination, I disentangle the processes that motivate discriminatory behavior by showing how seemingly innocuous references to “nationality” can be driven by a desire to hide racial prejudices, while at the same time, conflating all as “racism” can reflect a simplistic analysis of the contributing factors. I show how past historical structures of colonialism and slavery are manifest in current forms of structural violence and how this violence is differentially experienced on the basis of nationality, perceived racial differences, and/or ethnicity. Additionally, my research expands theories related to the spatial dimension of discrimination. It examines how zones of marginalization shape the experiences of low-wage migrant workers as they move through or occupy these spaces. Marginalizing zones limit workers’ access to the sociality of the city and its institutional resources, which consequently increase their vulnerability.

Individual well-being is determined by stressful events that one encounters, by personal and external sources of resilience, and by perceptions of oneself and the stressful events. For the migrants in my study, their stressors were chronic, cumulative, and ambiguous, and while they brought with them a sufficient amount of personal resilience, it was often mitigated by non-compliance and lack of enforcement of UAE laws. The result was a state of well-being defined by isolation, fear, and despair.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2018

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A systems approach to understanding and mitigating barriers to travel accessibility and well-being in the West Bank, Palestine

Description

The conflict conditions that afflict the livelihoods of Palestinian residents living in the West Bank are embedded within the population's ability to travel more so than any other routine activity.

The conflict conditions that afflict the livelihoods of Palestinian residents living in the West Bank are embedded within the population's ability to travel more so than any other routine activity. For Palestinian residents, domestic and international travel is a process of following paths riddled with multiple barriers that are both physical and political. Past studies have done well to paint a clear picture of the harsh transportation landscape in the region. However, less attention has focused on how barriers interact to indirectly and directly affect levels of accessibility and well-being. Additionally, suggested development solutions are rarely capable of being successfully implemented given current political conditions. This dissertation uses a systems approach to understand drivers of accessibility challenges in the West Bank and uses the understanding to propose a method to identify transition strategies that may be presently initiated whilst maintaining the ability to provide adequate benefit. The research question informing the study asks, How do drivers influencing the issue of poor accessibility and well-being in the West Bank persist and interact, and how might solutions be approached? The dissertation approaches the question in four sequential actions that each produces a functional planning deliverable. First, a system map that depicts the drivers and influences to the problem of poor accessibility and well-being is constructed (Chapter 4). Second, a future vision for the transportation system in the West Bank is identified (Chapter 5). Third, the system map and vision are used to assess how conflict conditions affect transition research (Chapter 6). Finally, the previous three deliverables are used to suggest a guide for transition management for transportation development in the West Bank (Chapter 7). Combinations of four different data sets, including an extensive review of published literature, field observations, individual field expert interviews, and group commuter interviews inform the research. Additionally, the Transformational Sustainability Research framework provides a normative base for the steps taken throughout the research. Ultimately, the dissertation presents an interpretation of information that has theoretical and practical application potential in transformational sustainability research and development efforts in the region respectively.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2015

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Translating Tomb dwellers for USAmericans: what the process of translation reveals about counter-censorship strategies among theatre artists in Iran

Description

In this dissertation, I translate and provide a critical analysis of the Iranian play, Tomb Dwellers (2009), by Hussein Kiyani. It was first staged after the contested presidential election in

In this dissertation, I translate and provide a critical analysis of the Iranian play, Tomb Dwellers (2009), by Hussein Kiyani. It was first staged after the contested presidential election in Iran in 2009 which brought Mahmoud Ahmadinejad into power for a second term. The play depicts the socioeconomic situation of Iran and its relation to other countries, the situation of women and the working class during Ahmadinejad’s two terms of presidency. Tomb Dwellers is written as a comedy, a genre more likely to make it past censors in Iran or other despotic countries. My research and translation project are sparked by questions that move in two directions simultaneously: one, toward understanding the sociopolitical context for theatre in Iran after the revolution of 1979; the other, toward the challenges of translating into English a play that stands as a social metaphor in its own historical context. Regarding the former, which forms the basis of my critical analysis, I explore the strategies artists have used to avoid the limitations imposed by the authorities. In making this play available to English-speaking readers at a time of political tension between Iran and the United States I offer to USAmerican audiences a more nuanced perspective of the way Iranian people feel about their government and its relation to other countries. This play is both timely and informative. Timely because of the tensions between the US and the Middle East. Informative because it represents the Iranian community and may serve to create a bridge between the two cultures. Translating and staging this play along with the critical analysis I am providing will help American audiences and immigrants from other countries to know more about Iran in a creative and entertaining way.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2019

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Bad ideology leads to bad behavior: why Muslim reformers must present an authoritative, comprehensive, and compelling counter-narrative to Islamism

Description

Belief affects behavior and rhetoric has the potential to bring about action. This paper is a critical content analysis of the ideology and rhetoric of key Islamist intellectuals and the

Belief affects behavior and rhetoric has the potential to bring about action. This paper is a critical content analysis of the ideology and rhetoric of key Islamist intellectuals and the Islamist organization Hizb ut-Tahrir, as stated on the website http://english.hizbuttahrir.org. The responses of specific Muslim Reformers are also analyzed. The central argument underlying this analysis centers on the notion that such Islamist ideology and its rhetorical delivery could be a significant trigger for the use of violence; interacting with, yet existing independently of, other factors that contribute to violent actions. In this case, a significant aspect of any solution to Islamist rhetoric would require that Muslim Reformers present a compelling counter-narrative to political Islam (Islamism), one that has an imperative to reduce the amount of violence in the region. Rhetoric alone cannot solve the many complicated issues in the region but we must begin somewhere and countering the explicit and implicit calls to violence of political Islamist organizations like Hizb ut-Tahrir seems a constructive step.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2010

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Anti-sexual harassment activism in Egypt:: transnationalism and the cultural politics of community mobilization

Description

Sexual harassment has emerged as a widespread problem facing women in public space in Egypt. Activism to combat sexual harassment began in 2005. However, just prior to and in the

Sexual harassment has emerged as a widespread problem facing women in public space in Egypt. Activism to combat sexual harassment began in 2005. However, just prior to and in the years following the January 25, 2011 Egyptian Revolution, which witnessed an increase in the collective sexual harassment, assault and rape of women, this activism has increased. Subsequently, scholarly attention to sexual harassment and public sexual violence has also expanded. Much of the attention in scholarly analyses has been directed toward politically motivated sexual violence, focused on understanding the state commissioning of sexual violence against female protestors to drive them from protest participation. There is an emerging critique of activist approaches that seems to ignore the politicalized nature of sexual harassment to focus instead on “cultural” targets. The early work of the Egyptian Center for Women’s Rights (ECWR) and current work of HarassMap have been criticized for depoliticizing sexual harassment by failing to include an analysis of state-commissioned sexual violence in their work. Similarly, both have been accused of expanding the scope of the security state by calling for increased policing of public space to protect women from “culturally-bad” men.

With data collected through one year of participant observation with HarassMap, interviews with activists from eleven anti-sexual harassment initiatives and advocacy NGOs, and community-level surveys with non-activist individuals, this dissertation argues that “cultural” work undertaken through the community-based approaches by entities like ECWR and HarassMap is, in fact, an inherently political process, in which political engagement represents both an attempt to change political culture and state practice and a negotiative process involving changing patriarchal gender norms that underpin sexual harassment at a society-wide level. New conceptualizations of sexual harassment promoted by anti-sexual harassment initiatives and NGOs in Egypt frame it as a form of violence against women, and attempt to make sexual harassment an offense that may be criminalized. Yet, this dissertation contends there is a tension between activist and widespread public understandings of sexual harassment, predicated on the incomplete framing of sexual harassment as a form of violence.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2016

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The Egyptian women's movement: identity politics and the process of liberation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries

Description

This thesis examines the advent of the Egyptian women's movement from the late nineteenth century until the middle of the twentieth century. Continuous negotiations for control between the secular and

This thesis examines the advent of the Egyptian women's movement from the late nineteenth century until the middle of the twentieth century. Continuous negotiations for control between the secular and the religious institutions of Egypt led to the state's domination over the public jurisdiction and the Islamists maintaining a grip over the Egyptian private sphere, which includes family laws and matters of the home. The Egyptian women's movement contested and resisted against the secular nationalists (the state) and conservative Islamists for just and equal society in general, and political rights, and educational, marriage, and divorce reform specifically, which were assurances made to the women's movement by both. Groups formed within the movement joined together and converged to collaborate on key concerns that involved Egyptian women as a collective group such as education and political rights. Using the written works of scholars and leaders of these movements, this study investigates and observes the unique unity achieved through the diversity and disunity of the Egyptian women's movement; as well as explores the individual activism of significant leaders and pioneers of the movement in the midst of cultural encounters resulting from imperialism, political revolutions, and other major societal and political developments of nineteenth and twentieth century Egypt. It explores the ideas and actions of the Egyptian women as they emerged from a veil of silence which shadowed women's existence in Egypt's crucial years of nationalization eventually leading to a unique emergence of an incorporation of Islamism and feminism.

Contributors

Agent

Created

Date Created
  • 2011