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The Kurds A Stateless Nation - Essay Example

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Instructor Date The Kurds A Stateless Nation The land of the Kurds or Kurdistan is an area located in the Middle East. Today, the geographical part comprises parts of Turkey, Azerbaijan, Syria, Iraq, and Iran. For the past decades, the Kurds have been identified as the largest stateless nations in the world…
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Download file to see previous pages Studies indicate that, the political and social-economic changes witnessed by the rural Kurds in the 1950s such as industrialization, rural-urban migration, mechanization of farming and agriculture, and political mobilization destabilized the tribal structure of their tribal structure (Romano 66). For instance, over 35% of the Kurdish population in Turkey lives in Izmir, Ankara, Istanbul, and other parts of Turkish cities. Many of these people left Kurdistan forcibly because of political and state terror or voluntarily because of economic and social purposes. This essay will explore more on the language, religion, and other cultural and economic aspects of Kurdish identity. According to Zulal (146), the Kurds continues to speak many languages of the Kurdish commonly categorized into two groups. The first language group is Kurmanji spoken by over 75% of the Kurds, composed of two branches; North Kurmanji the most widely used language among the Kurds and South Kurmanji. The second language group is the Pahlawani spoken by the 25% of the Kurds population and composed of two branches; Dimili and Gurani. Kurdish language serves as the cementing power of the Kurdish nationalism. For the past decades, conflicts have emerged within different tribes as many attempt to differentiate languages used by the Kurds. For instance, in the early 1920s, Ataturk substituted the alphabet words used in Turkish from the Arabic and Latin alphabet. As a result, the Kurds from turkey were forced to embrace and adapt the Latin alphabet for their language. In 1924, strict measures were imposed in Turkey to suppress the Kurds’ language (Entessar 66). The measures involved banning both written and spoken word of Kurdish language and ensuring that only those who speak and understand Turkish are provided with information and education. During that period, possession and distribution of written materials in Kurdish language became a severe crime liable to be punished by long prison sentence. However, in the early 1990s, Kurds within Turkey began to use their language. Many Kurds have had the opportunity to express their thoughts in writings and readings. In terms of religion, two thirds of the Kurds’ population are Sunni Muslims who adhere mostly to the Shafi’i legal schools. However, the Arab and Turkish adhere to the Hanafi schools while Persian and Azeri to the Shi’ite schools. The remaining population of Kurds adhere to heterodox and rituals and beliefs that are somehow influenced by Islam, but more influenced by other Iranian religion. The Syncretistic sects include the Ahle-e Haqq also known as people of truth, the Alevis, and Ahl-e Haqq. Still, there a few thousands Christians Kurds and Jewish Kurds living in and outside Kurdistan. In the 18th and 19th century, religion played a significant role in the Kurdish community. It dictates the way people lived and perceived things. For instance, most of the Kurdish rebellions that broke out between 1880 and 1940 were initiated by Sheikhs (Gunter 539). At this point, the rebellion was affected by the religious differences of the Kurds. For example, Sunnis divided into two religious diversities; the Naqshbandi and Qadiri that never cooperated with each other effectively. The religion diversities between the two religions instigated rebellious. In regard to education, the ban of the Kurdish language and shortages of teachers and schools in Kurdish community have hindered education development. A study ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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