Contemporary Kurdish Families in Finland: Traditional; Modern or Something Else?

Anne Häkkinen
University of Jyväskylä, Finland

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Ingår i: Current Issues in European Cultural Studies; June 15-17; Norrköping; Sweden 2011

Linköping Electronic Conference Proceedings 62:8, s. 55-62

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Publicerad: 2011-11-22

ISBN: 978-91-7519-993-1

ISSN: 1650-3686 (tryckt), 1650-3740 (online)


Family is a central institute that regulates person´s life in Kurdish communities and thus family relations are highly valued. Marriage – as closely related to family – is one of the key factors that maintains desired family relations. However Kurdish family patterns are usually seen and considered to be in terms of traditional for the reason that family have a great power over the individual. Still it is assumed that parents have to give their approval for the marriage. One way of sustaining family ties and family dynamics typical for Kurdish communities in the context of migration is marriage patterns. Example of this is the phenomenon called transnational marriage: an immigrant search for his/her spouse from country of origin and brings her/him back to the country of settlement. However this is not the only way of getting married among Kurds in Finland.

In my presentation I will discuss about the concepts of modern and traditional in the context of migration. Is it reasonable to use these concepts when trying to understand Kurdish families and marriage practices? Are we entitled to call them traditional or should we use other words to describe them?


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