What is it about?
Even as Europe celebrated smartphone use by refugees, Syrian Kurds fleeing to the Kurdistan Region of Iraq often used 2G technology. Upon arrival, they became asylum seekers and experienced distance from the host community, despite shared Kurdish identity. Their complex situation can be understood as the result of several factors, including ethnicity and language.
Photo by Eirik Solheim on Unsplash
Why is it important?
The findings outline here suggest that media and scholarly attention to Syrian refugees may, in often being focused on Europe, overlooked the situation in regional havens such as the Kurdistan Region of Iraq. The problem is compounded if researchers are set on tracking specific devices, like smartphones, rather than taking an interest in the people themselves and the regional histories informing their identities, experiences leading to displacement, and efforts to fashion lives in host communities.
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This page is a summary of: Trajectories of belonging and enduring technology: 2G phones and Syrian refugees in the Kurdistan Region of Iraq, European Journal of Communication, November 2019, SAGE Publications,
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