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Self-Making in Exile: Moral Emplacement by Syrian Refugee Women in Jordan


Abstract for Online Program Book (maximum 1200 characters including spaces)

This article brings an anthropology of ethics to bear on a case of forced migration and displacement among Syrian refugee women in Jordan. This case reveals how projects of Islamic self-making in displacement become “emplacement” processes within the new state-mediated context. This case reveals that Syrian women in Jordan engage in Islamic self-making as part of their wider emplacement practices in two primary ways: first, operating more publicly in the material world through Islamically-inspired actions and rituals than in Syria. Second, utilizing narratives of Islamic histories to establish dignity in conditions of precarity in exile. Using two focus groups in urban Jordan and participant observation in two religion classes in a refugee camp, this paper focuses on these practices of Islamic self-making that serve an important role in the projects of moral emplacement for Syrian women in the Jordanian context.