Title: In a Search to Belong: “The Lived Experience of Being a Refugee”
Stream: The World Refugee Crisis
Presentation Type: Live-Stream Presentation
Shaden Sabouni, Fulda University of Applied Sciences, Germany
Most of the academic discussions about Syrian refugees in Germany have focused on the difficulties of integration from an external perspective and have measured such difficulties using traditional academic methods of implanting interviews and consequently reaching conclusions based on the impressions of an outside observer. This research is to be considered as a new outlook because the spiritual side of integration is examined and exposed from an insider perspective. Through self-examination, reflective writing, and retelling specific incidents, I will gather the whole picture of my new life as a refugee in Germany and focus on incidents that urged me to reposition myself in my surroundings and to reconsider the meaning of identity and what influences or hinders me from involving my full capacity to develop a sense of belonging. To achieve this result, I use self-reflective writing throughout the whole research process, to assist me to uncover where I am now on the path towards self-acceptance. An ignored side in academic research is how refugees are struggling in their daily lives in their host country, going through cultural ascription in everyday life and the social and individual results with which they might end up. I address this knowledge gap by reflecting on my own everyday life experiences of racial assignation as a Syrian refugee. Knowing little outside of the experience of refugees, and less about refugees as individuals, I have been motivated by the lively pictures and my personal reflections to write about my own experience.
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