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The recent EU referendum campaign and resultant vote for the UK to leave the EU is creating new insecurities for EU citizens within and prospective migrants to the UK. At the same time, the European refugee ‘crisis’ was mobilised as a source of fear, insecurity and threat to the UK electorate by the Leave side in the referendum campaign. A collision of fears around intra EU mobility and refugee crisis was manufactured as a central feature of the Brexit vote. Central to such mobilisations are of course the reproduction of older legacies of inequality, precarity as well as white privilege, racism and colonial constructions of self and other. This workshop aims to address this duality within the new politics of insecurity in Europe: the (re)production of new forms of insecurity for migrants and their families, and the mobilisation of migration as an insecurity for resident populations. Here (re)production draws attention to the intimate connectivities of multiple ‘crises’ and the material, intimate, embodied sites and processes through which ‘new’ insecurities are (re)produced.
We particularly invite papers which connect fear of migrants with migrants’ fears. We also encourage consideration of the multiple scales and temporalities through which insecurity is felt, understood, managed, manipulated and ultimately (re)produced: through intimate relationships, within and outside ‘family’ groupings, across and within forms of affiliation, wider social institutions and trans/national polities. Papers are welcomed addressing (but not limited to) the following questions:
- How are connections between the consequences of the Brexit vote and the migrant ‘crisis’ reproducing (in)securities?
- How are migration insecurities mobilised politically across Europe?
- What evidence, if any, exists that migration contributes to rising economic and social insecurities of citizens in receiving societies in terms of e.g. labour markets, housing and welfare?
- How might experiences of precarity across groups posited as ‘us’ or ‘them’ be connected?
- How are insecurities processed, mediated or challenged through intimate relations?
- How do precarious migrants and their families plan future lives amid ‘crisis’?
- What practices of in/visibility are employed in the micro-politics of everyday encounters by EU nationals in response to fears?
- What research methods and approaches capture crisis, emotion, intention and temporality of (re)producing insecurities?
- How do we move forward as a society from these insecurities?
We invite paper proposals (abstracts of 200 words) addressing these and related questions from a theoretical, empirical, activist and/or normative perspective.
The workshop is particularly interested in papers that examine the social, political and ethical dynamics of (re)producing insecurities for (and about) mobile subjects within the contemporary ‘crisis’.
Please send abstracts to Hannah Lewis (email@example.com) by 1 August 2017.
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Sadler Series Seminar
Refugees, Austerity and Class Racism
Speaker: Dr Gholam Khiabany
Date: 30th November 2016 Location-Leeds Humanities Research Institute
In recent times sections of British press and political establishment have described refugees with reference to ‘toxic waste, human flotsam, an unstoppable flood and a terrorist threat’. Refugees are invariably accused of “seeking a better life, wanting to come to Britain because Britain has got jobs, it’s got a growing economy, it’s an incredible place to live” (David Cameron); as well as posing a threat to the EU’s standard of living and social structure (Phillip Hammond). During the EU Referendum the dominant media narrative revolved around a nation under siege by large number of illegal and legal immigrants who receive preferential treatment, strain social services, are the cause of unemployment and poverty, and threaten the very fabric of society. Examining some of the examples in which the economic crisis are blamed on migrations and ‘marauding’ refugees, it will be shown that the official response to and coverage of the refugee crisis attempts to a) advance the discourse of austerity as immigration reform; b) use the perceive threats of refugees from developing countries to introduce measures and policies (structural adjustment) that have been imposed on developing nations through IMF and World Bank; c) redefine anti-immigration in a post-racist disguise by introducing anti-immigration and militarisation of borders as austerity policy; d) displace the markers of ‘insecurity’ from the 99% as a whole on to ‘foreigners’ and refugees. It is through this narrative of anti-immigration justified on the basis of austerity that nationalism which is articulated in opposition to class struggle becomes the vehicle through which the concern of ‘native workers’ are articulated.
Gholam Khiabany teaches in the Department of Media and Communications at Goldsmiths, University of London. He is the author of Iranian Media: The Paradox of Modernity and co-author of Blogistan, with Annabelle Sreberny. He is an editor of the Middle East Journal of Culture and Communication, and is a member of council of management of the Institute of Race Relations.
For more information visit:
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The Frontline of the Migration Crisis
Experiences of Syrian Refugees and Community Support in Turkey and Leeds
Yasemin Somuncu Refugee Commission, ‘All Children are Ours’ Association, Turkey
Sawsan Zaza Syrian community in Leeds
22nd November 2016, Tuesday 16.30-18.30
Michael Sadler Building rom SR (LG.19)
30 November (Wednesday, Leeds Humanities Research Institute, Sem Rm 1, 2-4pm)
Invited Speaker / LMRN Sadler Series:
GHOLAM KHIABANY (Goldsmiths College, London) “Refugees, austerity and class racism”
Photo credit www.anahaberim.com
An event organised by Leeds Migration Research Network in collaboration with Leeds Social Science Institute, School of Sociology and Social Policy and CERIC Business School, University of Leeds
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University of Leeds collaboration with Jinan University, Guangzhou explores parallels in contemporary labour migration and itizenship in China and Europe
The rapid urbanisation of China has created enormous policy and ethical dilemmas about the treatment of rural migrants: workers who live without full citizenship and welfare rights in immense new cities when they leave their registered homeland region of residence, on which their rights are normally based (the hukou system). There are as many as 270 million such migrants living in the margins of booming Chinese cities. Dr. Heather Zhang (East Asian Studies, Leeds) and Prof. Chunchao Wang (Economics, Jinan University) saw this as an opportunity to expand research networks around a topic which, in fact, has significant parallels to Europe – both in the past and the present. It was in the late 19th century when countries in Western Europe experienced the kind of a mass internal migration, which ripped generations of workers out of the countryside and into cities. Today, immigration is at the centre of European populist politics, but in many ways labour migration within the EU (the free movement of workers) resembles Chinese internal migrations – except that EU workers benefit from European citizenship rights and (more contestedly) welfare benefits when they live and work in another member state. In the UK, EU citizens may begin to resemble their precarious Chinese counterparts more if they lose such rights as a result of the Brexit vote.Around this theme, Jinan University hosted a three-day event in July 2016 entitled Rural-Urban Migration and Inclusionary Urbanisation in China which pulled together over 50 advanced researchers from the UK and China, across a broad disciplinary range of economics, development studies, policy studies, sociology and anthropology. The conference was supported by a British Council (Newton Fund) – National Sciences Foundation of China collaborative research grant, enabling the University of Leeds to gather 15 outstanding UK based post-doctoral early career researchers to join in discussions with a similar number of Chinese counterparts in a hot, mid-summer’s Guangzhou in South China. Continue reading
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