Solh, Camillia Fawsi (1985)
Egyptian migrant peasants in Iraq. A case-study of the settlement community in Khalsa.
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In 1975, the Governments of Iraq and Egypt signed a bilateral agreement according to which Egyptian peasant families would be resettled in Iraq. One hundred settlers and their families arrived in 1976 in the Khalsa Settlement south of Baghdad, where each was given a house and the indefinite lease to a plot of land. The present study set out to discover the type of community which evolved in this Settlement given the fact that the Egyptian peasant families were recruited from different provinces in Egypt. It was assumed that the geographical remoteness of the home villages as well as the confrontation with a relatively alien socio-economic environment---cultural similarities between Egypt and Iraq notwithstanding---would serve to diminish the importance of the settler households' heterogeneous provincial origins and encourage the formation of a relatively cohesive community.
The majority of the Egyptian peasant families included in the present study have not failed to take advantage of new economic opportunities which have come their way after resettlement. This has necessitated a certain change in social values and norms. It was found that there is a certain selectivity with regard to the extent to which values and norms have been modified in response to the demands of a new way of life after resettlement. This very selectivity has had an impact on the scope of male and female social networks in Khalsa and thus on the type of community of social control which has evolved in this Settlement.
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Institution: University of London, Bedford College (United Kingdom).