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Choosing the Mountains: The PKK as alternative knowledge and identity project

Kariane Westrheim

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This article investigates the PKK movement from an educational perspective. During the past twenty five years, thousands of Kurdish youth have been gravitating to the PKK, and struggled in what is termed the 29th Kurdish uprising. The PKK define itself as an educational revolution. Since its foundation in the seventies, the armed struggle gradually has adopted the characteristics of a political and social movement. The article is based on a qualitative study that reveals which perspectives on knowledge and personal development participation in the PKK (Kurdistan Workers Party) fosters. Through transformation of knowledge and personality the cadres have become aware of their identity, social and political situation,something that created a feeling of dignity and confidence.

Keywords: PKK – Kurdish identity – social movements – education and knowledge