TRE Spotlight: Wendy Pearlman

Wendy Pearlman, a POMEPS Travel-Research-Engagement (TRE) grant recipient, recently published “Fathers of Revolution” in Guernica based on extensive fieldwork with Syrian refugees in​ camps in Jordan and Turkey. In “Fathers of Revolution” Pearlman tells the story of Abu Ma’an a young man from the Daraa province and former member of the Free Syrian Army. She writes, “Abu Ma’an’s face brightened when he remembered the uprising’s exuberant beginnings. ‘What we lived those days can never be repeated,’ he said. ‘We felt like we were doing the greatest thing in the world. But all that has disappeared. You lose even the fact that you used to be a person.'”

​Pearlman has been a frequent contributor to POMEPS and joined the ​Steering Committee in 2013. She received a TRE grant in summer 2012 for research on mobilization in Syria and has interviewed more than 150 Syrian refugees. Pearlman discussed her fieldwork in POMEPS Conversations 9 with POMEPS Director Marc Lynch and, reflecting on one set of interviews, she wrote, “Love in the Syrian Revolution.”  In November 2013 Pearlman participated in the POMEPS panel “Challenges of the Syrian Opposition” and workshop “The Political Science of Syria’s War,” for which she authored “Understanding Fragmentation in the Syrian Revolt.” Additionally, she wrote, “Middle East political science research during transition” for POMEPS Briefings #12 New Opportunities for Political Science. Pearlman has also contributed to the Middle East Channel including “A new Palestinian Intifada?” and “Rebel fragmentation in Syria and Palestine.”

Pearlman is the Crown Junior Chair in Middle East studies and assistant professor of political science at Northwestern University. She is the author of Violence, Nonviolence, and the Palestinian National Movement (Cambridge University Press, 2011) and Occupied Voices: Stories of Everyday Life from the Second Intifada (Nation Books, 2003). She is co-editor of “Nonstate actors, fragmentation, and conflict processes,” a special issue of Journal of Conflict Resolution with Kathleen Gallagher Cunningham. She has also recently authored “Competing for Lebanon’s Diaspora: Transnationalism and Domestic Struggles in a Weak State” in International Migration Review. — C.K.

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