This research examines the encounter between state welfare programs and local culture in the Kurdish region of Turkey. During the last decade, the Turkish state has attempted to address a history of violence against Kurds by implementing social assistance programs on a large scale, thus hoping to create a respectful Kurdish citizenry. Kurds, on the other hand, feel that they are “owed” such assistance, precisely because of that history, and are less sanguine about prospects for their inclusion into the Turkish polity. I will conduct ethnographic research into state-local interactions around state-administered welfare programs in the Kurdish cities of Diyarbakir and Van, and will explore the hybrid forms of citizenship and claim-making that result. I am interested in the ways in which critical vernaculars might disrupt the depoliticizing effects of welfare and development discourse and bring into being new political subjectivities. My project seeks to contribute to the literatures on debt, state and citizenship, welfare and development.