Book launch : Stateless in the Gulf. Mirgation, Nationality and Society in Kuwaït (16/07/2018)
The Kuwaiti population includes around 100,000 people – approximately 10 per cent of the Kuwaiti nationals –whose legal status is contested. Often considered ‘stateless’, they have come to be known in Kuwait as biduns, from ‘bidun jinsiyya’, which means literally ‘without nationality’ in Arabic. As long-term residents with close geographical ties and intimate cultural links to the emirate, the biduns claim that they are entitled to Kuwaiti nationality because they have no other. But since 1986 the State of Kuwait, has considered them ‘illegal residents’ on Kuwaiti territory. As a result, the biduns have been denied civil and human rights and treated as undocumented migrants, with no access to employment, health, education or official birth and death certificates. While Biduns’ emigration as a result of pressure is not new, the Biduns have become part of the broader movement of refugees since 2014.
Claire Beaugrand argues in her book that, far from being an anomaly, the position of the biduns is of central importance to the understanding of state formation processes in the Gulf countries, and the ways in which identity and the boundaries of nationality are negotiated and concretely enacted.
Date and time
16th of july 2018, 6-8 pm
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