Ethnic Diversity and the Question of National Identity in Iraq

By Omar Chaoura Bourouh.

Published by The Diversity Collection

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Article: Print $US10.00
Article: Electronic $US5.00

The occupation of Iraq by US and British forces since March 2003 has resulted, among other things, in the intensification of the debate between academics (and politicians) about the prospects for national unity in ethnically and religiously diverse societies. In Iraq, this question is exacerbated even more by the continuing violence attributed to ethnic and sectarian divisions. This paper examines the cultural and structural elements historically shared by Iraqis as a people in defined socio-economic and political entity, and discusses the characteristics of differentiation between the various ethnic and religious groups who constitute this entity. I argue first, that ethnic and religious diversity does not necessarily constitute a ground for political conflict, and second, diversity can be renegotiated in different historical and political contexts on the basis of common national identity

Keywords: Iraq, National Identity, Ethnic Diversity, Civil Society, Ethnic Group, Ethnic Conflict

International Journal of Diversity in Organizations, Communities and Nations, Volume 7, Issue 5, pp.305-314. Article: Print (Spiral Bound). Article: Electronic (PDF File; 722.335KB).

Omar Chaoura Bourouh

Assistant Professor, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada

Omar Chaoura Bourouh is Assistant Professor at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology, University of Windsor, Windsor, Ontario, Canada. His areas of interest and research are ethnicity, migration, work and international development.

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