Leeds Migration Reseach Network


Cfp: (Re)producing Insecurities: University of Sheffield, Friday 29 September 2017

original source: link

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 (h.j.lewis@sheffield.ac.uk) by  1 August 2017.

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The Future of Free Movement in China and Europe

University of Leeds collaboration with Jinan University, Guangzhou explores parallels in contemporary labour migration and itizenship in China and Europe

Slide2The 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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Post brexit effects on migration and migrant rights




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Launch Event LeedsMRN

Brigete Jones MRN LaunchLaunch Event: Thursday June 9th 4.00-5.30pm, followed by drinks reception

Leeds University Business School, Maurice Keyworth Lecture Theatre

Speaker: Professor Bridget Anderson, Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS), University of Oxford

Title: Parasites and Beasts of Burden: Rethinking the Politics of Migration

Abstract: The situation at the borders of Europe has seen those seeking to enter depicted either as slaves or as animals while Europeans are increasingly described as ‘natives’. That is, while historically the ‘native’ was often imagined as a sub-species of human being directly in contrast with the European, being native has more recently become associated with a claim to rights to belong in contrast to the non-European ‘space invaders’. This paper will discuss the distinction between the (modern day) slave, the (contemporary) native and the animal, beginning from the observation that the kinds of animals that ‘migrants’ are likened to – cockroaches, rats, parasites etc – are not livestock, that is, they are not productive. In this they are unlike ‘beasts of burden’ and livestock that slaves were compared to in the past. Furthermore, not only do these animals lack the capacity to reason, but they lack the capacity to feel and to elicit feeling. I will consider what this reveals about the contemporary politics of immigration in Europe and the survivalist responses to threats to lifestyles.

Bio: Bridget Anderson is Professor of Migration and Citizenship and Research Director at COMPAS. She has a DPhil in Sociology and previous training in Philosophy and Modern Languages. She is the author of Us and Them? The Dangerous Politics of Immigration Controls (Oxford University Press, 2013) and Doing the Dirty Work? The Global Politics of Domestic Labour (Zed Books, 2000). She co-edited Who Needs Migrant Workers? Labour Shortages, Immigration and Public Policywith Martin Ruhs (Oxford University Press, 2010 and 2012) The Social, Political and Historical Contours of Deportation with Matthew Gibney and Emanuela Paoletti (Springer, 2013), and Migration and Care Labour: Theory, Policy and Politics with Isabel Shutes (Palgrave Macmillan, 2014)

Bridget has explored the tension between labour market flexibilities and citizenship rights, and pioneered an understanding of the functions of immigration in key labour market sectors. Her interest in labour demand has meant an engagement with debates about trafficking and modern day slavery, which in turn led to an interest in state enforcement and deportation, and in the ways immigration controls increasingly impact on citizens as well as on migrants. Bridget has worked closely with migrants’ organisations, trades unions and legal practitioners at local, national and international level.

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