The Politics of Education in Iraq: The Influence of Territorial Dispute and Ethno-Politics on Schooling in Kirkuk

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Abstract

The Iraqi Disputed Territories, or Disputed Internal Boundaries, consist of 15
districts stretching across four northern governorates from the Syrian to Iranian
borders. The oil-rich Iraqi governorate of Kirkuk lies at the heart of this dispute and reflects the country’s ethnic and religious diversity. Arabs, Turkmen, Kurds, and Assyrians all claim ancient settlement patterns within the governorate. The symbolic importance of Kirkuk as a homeland to both Kurds and the Turkmen conflicts directly with its strategic importance to Baghdad. While the two linguistically distinct centers of governance vie for control, interethnic communal tensions are rising and questions of identity increasingly overshadow day-to-day life. The existing research on Kirkuk focuses heavily on governance outcomes and possible administrative solutions, but little has been written about the impact of heightened identity politics on the everyday lives of citizens. This paper explores the influence of these conflicts and contests on education in the city of Kirkuk.
LanguageEnglish
Pages141-163
JournalJournal on Education in Emergencies
Volume4
Issue number1
Early online date31 Aug 2018
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 31 Aug 2018

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Kurd
Iraq
governance
politics
settlement pattern
Homelands
Arab
everyday life
education
citizen

Cite this

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title = "The Politics of Education in Iraq: The Influence of Territorial Dispute and Ethno-Politics on Schooling in Kirkuk",
abstract = "The Iraqi Disputed Territories, or Disputed Internal Boundaries, consist of 15districts stretching across four northern governorates from the Syrian to Iranianborders. The oil-rich Iraqi governorate of Kirkuk lies at the heart of this dispute and reflects the country’s ethnic and religious diversity. Arabs, Turkmen, Kurds, and Assyrians all claim ancient settlement patterns within the governorate. The symbolic importance of Kirkuk as a homeland to both Kurds and the Turkmen conflicts directly with its strategic importance to Baghdad. While the two linguistically distinct centers of governance vie for control, interethnic communal tensions are rising and questions of identity increasingly overshadow day-to-day life. The existing research on Kirkuk focuses heavily on governance outcomes and possible administrative solutions, but little has been written about the impact of heightened identity politics on the everyday lives of citizens. This paper explores the influence of these conflicts and contests on education in the city of Kirkuk.",
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AB - The Iraqi Disputed Territories, or Disputed Internal Boundaries, consist of 15districts stretching across four northern governorates from the Syrian to Iranianborders. The oil-rich Iraqi governorate of Kirkuk lies at the heart of this dispute and reflects the country’s ethnic and religious diversity. Arabs, Turkmen, Kurds, and Assyrians all claim ancient settlement patterns within the governorate. The symbolic importance of Kirkuk as a homeland to both Kurds and the Turkmen conflicts directly with its strategic importance to Baghdad. While the two linguistically distinct centers of governance vie for control, interethnic communal tensions are rising and questions of identity increasingly overshadow day-to-day life. The existing research on Kirkuk focuses heavily on governance outcomes and possible administrative solutions, but little has been written about the impact of heightened identity politics on the everyday lives of citizens. This paper explores the influence of these conflicts and contests on education in the city of Kirkuk.

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