Nomadic pastoralism in the Arabian Peninsula has undergone significant change over the past 150 years as a response to alterations in its relationship with central authority. Efforts to settle and transform pastoralists into settled farmers – a key policy of Post WWI neo-colonial and later newly emerging nation states – has largely disappeared. Instead we see concentrated drives to label such communities as backward, economically irrational, and obsolete. More recently, a policy of ‘benign’ neglect has permitted pastoral communities in Arabia to adapt, resist and face new challenges from multinational extractive industry, global conservation organizations, and climate change.
ABOUT THE SPEAKER
Dawn Chatty is Emeritus Professor in Anthropology and Forced Migration and former Director of the Refugee Studies Centre, University of Oxford, United Kingdom. She is also Fellow of the British Academy. Her research interests include: coping strategies and resilience of refugee youth; tribes and tribalism; nomadic pastoralism and conservation; gender and development; health, illness and culture.
She has edited numerous books, including Deterritorialized Youth: Sahrawi and Afghan Refugees at the Margins of the Middle East (Berghahn Books, 2010); Nomadic Societies in the Middle East and North Africa: Facing the 21st Century (Leiden, Brill, 2006); Children of Palestine: Experiencing Forced Migration in the Middle East (Berghahn Books, 2005); and Conservation and Mobile Peoples: Displacement, Forced Settlement and Sustainable Development (Berghahn Press, 2002).
Prof Chatty is the author of Displacement and Dispossession in the Modern Middle East (Cambridge University Press, 2010), From Camel to Truck(White Horse Press, 2013), and Syria: The Making and Unmaking of a Refuge State (Hurst Publishers, 2018).
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