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The Centre for the Study of Global Human Movement



Beja Protner is a sociocultural anthropologist, holding an undergraduate degree in Ethnology and Cultural Anthropology from the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia, an MA degree in Cultural Studies from Sabanci University in Istanbul, Turkey, and an MPhil in Social Anthropology from the University of Cambridge. Her research in Slovenia has focused on nationalism, exclusionary discourses, and experiences of statelessness, especially in the context of the Erasure from the register of permanent residents of the Republic of Slovenia. Between 2012 and 2017, she lived, studied, and researched in Turkey. Her work mostly focused on the Kurdish issue, but addressed also broader questions of belonging and exclusion. The topics of her research include individual and collective memories of war and political violence, lived experiences of ethnopolitical divisions and exclusion, Turkishness, belonging, and complicity, gender and sexuality, political subjectivity, affect and emotions, perpetrator graffiti and photography, and digital/online violence.


Recently, Beja’s fieldwork has moved to Greece, where she has been working with the Kurdish and left-wing political refugees from Turkey. Her MPhil dissertation at the University of Cambridge, titled “Hope and Survival in Transition,” investigated the refugees’ experiences of protracted transitionality and waiting in Athens, and the kinds of hope that can be generated in the precarious conditions of possibility among the revolutionary refugees.


Beja’s PhD project aims to explore ethnographically and theoretically displacement and emplacement as continuous processes among the political refugees from Turkey in Greece. It addresses the lived experiences of movement and migration through an investigation of people's emotional geographies and embodied relationships with the material spaces they inhabit, and the places of their memories and imagination.


Affective relationships between humans and environments; emotional geographies; lived experiences of space/time and borders in the context of (im)mobility and political exile; experiences of war & political violence; emotions, political subjectivity & migration; belonging; Turkey, Greece, Europe.

PhD Candidate, Department of Social Anthropology
Ms Beja  Protner

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