Program Details

War, Women, and Religion: A Semi-Personal Account

Mehmet Gurses
International Relations / Current Events

Course Description

Dr. Mehmet Gurses’ book, Anatomy of a Civil War, was recently published by the University of Michigan Press. This is a product of several years of interviewing dozens of people whose lives have been affected by the armed conflict between the PKK insurgents and the Turkish state, listening to their stories, visiting dozens of forcibly evacuated villages, and having long conversations with former militants. As part of this project, nearly 4,000 individuals from three Kurdish-majority provinces in eastern Turkey were contacted, 2,100 of which agreed to participate in the study. In addition, Dr. Gurses traveled to Canada, Belgium, and Germany to interview members of the Kurdish community about their experiences with war and displacement. He will present the unexpected results of this long and arduous journey. Just as the destructive nature of war manifests itself in various forms and shapes, wartime experiences have engendered positive attitudes toward women, created a culture of political activism, and resulted in an observable secularization among the Kurds. In this one-time lecture, Dr. Gurses will present the outcome of years of scientific research, coupled with real-life stories of war and peace.

About the Instructor

  • Mehmet Gurses, PhD, is a professor of Political Science at Florida Atlantic University and comparative politics and international relations editor of the journal Politics and Religion (Cambridge University Press). His research interests include ethnic and religious conflict, post-civil war peace building, post-civil war democratization, and the Middle East. He is the author of Anatomy of a Civil War: Sociopolitical Impacts of the Kurdish Conflict in Turkey (University of Michigan Press, 2018) and co-editor of Conflict, Democratization and the Kurds in the Middle East: Turkey, Iran, Iraq, and Syria (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014). He has published extensively in journals including, International Interactions, Social Science Quarterly, Civil Wars, Defense and Peace Economics, Democratization, International Studies Perspectives, Party Politics, Conflict Management and Peace Science, Political Research Quarterly, and Comparative Politics.

    Lifelong Learning Professorship of Current Affairs, 2019-2020

Upcoming programs presented by Mehmet Gurses.

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