Tribes and Tribalism in the Syrian Uprising

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Haian Dukhan


This article attempts to explain the re-emergence of tribalism in Syria. Arab tribes in Syria have retained their solidarity networks and held on to their belief in the “ideology of a common lineage”, as well as to the importance of marriage and alliances, despite the fact that many have been driven from nomadism to sedentary agriculture and herding or to a settled life on the outskirts of cities. Most of the research conducted so far into the Syrian uprising has focused on the sectarian element of the conflict. Yet, there is also a tribal dimension to the conflict. This paper will shed light on the resurgence of tribalism during the Syrian uprising and investigate the role of Arab tribes during this period.

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