PhD student Isra Saymour publishes first peer-reviewed journal article in Human Geography

April 27, 2022 by Suzanne Jaeger

Isra Saymour's article entitled The oilfields of Mesopotamia: Resource conflict, oil extraction and heritage destruction in Iraq” was recently published in Human Geography. Quoting from the article Abstract: "Using a critical, multidisciplinary array of secondary sources, this paper links oil, conflict, and culture against a (neo)colonial backdrop to illustrate that Operation Iraqi Freedom was a resource war that targeted not only natural but also cultural resources, leading to the parallel extraction and displacement of oil and heritage. Reframing the Iraq War through the lens of culture reveals how the conflict and following instability dispossessed the Iraqi people of their autonomy and capacity for political mobilization, with the broader purpose of establishing a stable regime of extraction to mitigate the demands of resource dependency. This analysis presents a new reading and conceptualization of oil, and a broader understanding of how resource dependency creates holistic spheres of violence and dispossession that work to reproduce and reinforce colonial and imperial power relations."