The question of collective national identity and culture among Jordanian population: dividers and connectors.

Al-Zarqa 27-2-2022

The holding of this workshop comes in cooperation between the Institute for Politics and Society and the European Union Delegation in Amman, to discuss and develop the common space among Jordanian women & youth participating in the workshop on the subject of collective national identity, and the common denominators of all Jordanians, reducing the concerns and doubts that dominate people’s thinking about national issues over other topics related to higher national and public interests, such as democracy, services, and economic development.

The sub-objectives of the seminar are:

Knowledge about the attitudes and trends of Jordanians, including women & youth, towards the issue of collective national identity, and linking this to the main variables; Age, social background (tribe, religion, ethnicity, city of origin), education level, gender.
The development (enhancement) of common concepts among the participating of the concept of collective national identity and its components and the common ground that is formed through the higher public and national interests.
Examining the “gaps in the collective national identity”, which is meant by concerns, doubts, and points of disagreement, and an attempt to liberate them and bring points of view closer together.
Introducing the participants to the importance of the issue of collective national identity and the danger of identity politics at the same time and its impact on societal peace in the case that society is torn into conflicting or competing for opposite identities.
Raise awareness about the importance of identity diversity, in political and civil spaces.

Several questions will be asked in the workshop to achieve the previous objectives:
Who is the Jordanian? Does it include everyone who holds a Jordanian national number? Is someone is more “Jordanian” than others?

What are the most prominent features of the Jordanian collective national identity? What are the political symbols, the major historical narratives, and the social and cultural components?

What are the general lines of supreme (higher) national interests and public interests that represent a common ground on which all citizens stand, regardless of their origins, religion, and social backgrounds?

What are the concerns or gaps and points that constitute a difference and a reason for the rise of sub-identities at the expense of the collective national identity?

How does the issue of collective national identity affect the democratic reform project?

What are the required amendments in official policies about the issue of identity to consolidate the comprehensive Jordanian identity in the face of conflicting sub-identities?

Methodology, Selection, Topics

The methodology of the workshop is based on selecting a group of young people from Zarqa Governorate, which is rich in social, cultural, and religious diversity, and the target number is fifty young people, with an emphasis on diversity and balance in terms of gender (male, female), religion (Muslim, Christian), social background (city of origin, clans, and refugees), ethnicity (Arab, Circassian or Chechen), educational level.

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