The Logic of Generosity: resilient action among Jordanian women in Al Manara, Amman, in response to pressures on charity donations posed by Syrian refugees
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This thesis deals with the question why violence does NOT occur in times of high disruption. In the context of the impact of the Syrian refugee crisis in Jordan, the urban poor (women in particular) in a neighborhood in east Amman show a particular form of resilience against disruptive changes posed by Syrian refugees. The thesis draws on bodies of literature on resilience, precariousness and livelihood and combines these with insights on patronage and ‘religion as cultural work’. After setting out the theoretical framework in the first chapters, this thesis moves on to discuss the ways in which the ‘care system’ works in the neighborhood Al Manara and how religion and patronage networks play out as resilience mechanisms. The fourth and fifth chapters respectively look at how these mechanisms are affected by the influx of Syrian refugees in the region from both the point of view of the patron and the clients. On the contrary to what could be perhaps expected, the patronage system of negotiated power is not en endangered, but in fact reinforced through higher levels of interdependency resulting from the influx of Syrian refugees. The key to this is a ‘logic of generosity’ which is supported by locally specific religious and cultural scripts.