Seite drucken. Seite weiterempfehlen.

Sophie Roche publishes book on jihad in Tajikistan

09. Dez. 2019

Dr. Sophie Roche, former research group leader and associate member at the HCTS, published the volume "The Faceless Terrorist. A Study of Critical Events in Tajikistan." It is based on an ethnographic project that examines the jihad in text and context using a biographical approach, and addresses the relationships between concepts and experiences in a Transcultural frame.

Since the end of the Soviet Union, the people from the republic Tajikistan have struggled to find a place in the larger Muslim world - a painful process unfolding in relation to global events, discourses and politics. How could a person portrayed as a terrorist by the Tajik state also be seen as a mujahid fighter in Islam and be a cousin at the same time? Is this just a matter of perspective and conceptualization? To believe in the protection of concepts to safeguard groups and individuals from the uncertain character of the world, is to deny the existence of chance and the contradictions in life.

The book presents "novel material on a fascinating and highly important topic, namely the nature of ostensibly Islamist political violence against the state in Tajikistan" (Professor John Heathershaw, London School of Economics). Building up on the ethnographic material that Roche collected in the course of her fieldwork in Tajikistan since 2002, the volume explores the ways in which the notions of jihad, mujahid, and terrorism were used during a military intervention in Tajikistan in 2010. The material incorporates also popular pamphlets on Islam and an internet analysis of the conflict. By using methods and theories from existential anthropology as well as the novel biographical approach which she developed for Transcultural studies, the author intends to offer new insights into the relationships existing between concepts and lived experiences.

Dr. Sophie Roche was a research associate and junior research group leader at the Heidelberg Centre for Transcultural Studies of Heidelberg University. Her research focus encompasses conflicts and environmental disasters in Central Asia, Iran, and Germany. Between 2013 and 2017, she was leader of the junior research group “The Demographic Turn in the Junction of Cultures” at the former Cluster "Asia and Europe". Before that, she worked at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle/Saale and at the Zentrum Moderner Orient in Berlin. Roche´s new project, for which she will collaborate with researchers from the universities of Tehran and Isfahan, deals with the effect of disasters on the human-environment relationship in Iran and Tajikistan.


RSS Feeds

RSS FeedNews Feed