‘Hey, Afghani!’ Identity Contentions among Iranians and Afghan Refugees

Zuzanna Olszewska

in Dispossession and Displacement

Published by British Academy

Published in print August 2010 | ISBN: 9780197264591
Published online February 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780191734397 | DOI:

Series: British Academy Occasional Papers

‘Hey, Afghani!’ Identity Contentions among Iranians and Afghan Refugees

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This chapter addresses issues of identity and rootlessness as expressed through poetry. It focuses in on the second generation of Afghan refugees who were portrayed as a confused generation subjected to the ‘pains of exile’ and ‘identity crisis’. It explores the representations of Afghans in Iran and examines the ways in which the Iran-educated Afghans responded and defied their marginalization through their own discourse and poetry. By examining the poetry of these second generation Afghan refugees, the social transformations taking place in this group or refugees and the tensions in the Iranian society are illuminated. These poems illustrate the distressing ambivalence experienced by the second-generation Afghan refugees in Iran.

Keywords: issues of identity; rootlessness; second-generation Afghan refugees; Iran; poetry; confused generation; pains of exile; identity crisis; representations of Afghans; marginalization

Chapter.  7167 words.  Illustrated.

Subjects: Migration Studies

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