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Beauty for harmony: moral negotiations and autonomous acts in Diyarbakır, Turkey

Düzel, Esin (2020) Beauty for harmony: moral negotiations and autonomous acts in Diyarbakır, Turkey. Comparative Studies of South Asia, Africa and the Middle East, 40 (1). 180 - 192. ISSN 1089-201X

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Identification Number: 10.1215/1089201X-8186170


Beauty can be a source of self-making within a political community, and that self can display moral autonomy via publicly visible and invisible practices while still adhering to a community. At a time of transition during the early 2000s from militarized resistance to urban civil politics, radical democracy, and gender ideals, older militarized notions of the Kurdish self, body, and beauty were changing. In a context of heightened visibility within the movement, women active in the Kurdish movement responded by recrafting their femininities, using beautification practices as a modern, urban, and empowering political tool. But beautification of the new self also entailed often sticky negotiations over the moral boundaries between the self and the movement, producing anxieties over what and who should constitute the moral. As women's actions, public roles, and visibilities became important indicators of the Kurdish movement's political success, their beauty practices and beautiful visibilities came to be viewed through the urgent need for moral unity. Central to Kurdish women activists' experience of and response to the political and social transformations going on around them, the integration of beauty practices into their politics placed moral autonomy at the center of the construction of new models of Kurdish femininity.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2020 by Duke University Press
Divisions: European Institute
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HQ The family. Marriage. Woman
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GT Manners and customs
Date Deposited: 31 Jul 2020 23:33
Last Modified: 16 May 2024 03:07

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