New Journal Research Articles for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies 02/16/2016

  • Despite Europe’s mass investments in advanced border controls, people keep arriving along the continent’s shores under desperate circumstances. European attempts to ‘secure’ or ‘protect’ the borders have quite clearly failed, as politicians themselves increasingly recognise – yet more of the same response is again rolled out in response to the escalating ‘refugee crisis’. Amid the deadlock, this article argues that we need to grasp the mechanics and logics of the European ‘border security model’ in order to open up for a change of course. Through ethnographic examples from the Spanish-African borders, the article shows how the striving for border security under a prevailing emergency frame has generated absurd incentives, negative path dependencies and devastating consequences. At Europe’s frontiers, an industry of border controls has emerged, involving European defence contractors, member state security forces and their African counterparts, as well as a range of non-security actors. Whenever another ‘border crisis’ occurs, this industry grows again, feeding on its own apparent ‘failures’. This vicious cycle may be broken, the article concludes, once policy-makers start curtailing the economies of border security underpinning it – yet the challenges are formidable as the industry retrenches along with the political response to the drama it has itself produced.


  • This paper addresses the urgent and understudied issue of how to protect migrants stranded by disasters in their countries of destination, focusing on the roles of institutions and state actors in migrant-receiving nations. It explains how migrant displacement can be understood in terms of international norms concerning internal displacement. Then, it argues that the migrant-receiver state bears the primary responsibility for protecting displaced migrants who fit the category of “internally displaced persons (IDPs)” and assisting their short- and longer-term recoveries. A case study of Japan illustrates how these concepts are adopted in a real situation. Overall, this disaster-prone nation has been fulfilling its protection duties toward the vulnerable migrant population by building inclusive and equitable protection mechanisms. But, such activism is more salient at lower levels than at the upper level of the state. Highlighting the legal, normative, and institutional gaps of migrant protection from disasters at international and national levels, this paper elucidates the merits of considering at-risk migrants as IDPs and their host state as the primary guardian, so as to build a more adaptive and resilient disaster mitigation framework in culturally diverse environments.


  • In recent decades, Coptic Egyptian immigrants have steadily adopted new homelands throughout the world, most significantly in Europe, North America, and Australia. Their efforts perpetuate their religious and cultural identity and connect diaspora communities and experiences to the mother church as well as to the realities of marginalization and persecution of their co-religionists in Egypt. However, relatively little research has been carried out on the virtual or digital presences of diaspora Copts, all the more significant in the wake of the so-called Arab Spring. Focusing on religious identity, this article fills a lacuna by analyzing three case studies of electronic identity mediation and preservation in the Coptic diaspora: (1) the online ecclesiastical-pastoral and educational presence of Bishop Suriel of Melbourne, (2) the spiritual-social-cultural mission of the Los Angeles-based Coptic television station LogosTV, and (3) the global collaborative academic project of the digital Claremont Coptic Encyclopedia. These are part of an emerging electronic Coptic diaspora (e-diaspora)—a form of borderless territoriality—that functions to compensate for the loss of territorial and socio-religious-cultural-political control in Egypt and provide Copts with virtual territorial gains and borderless space for community and consciousness raising.


  • The political climate on immigration and diversity in various European societies has previously been analysed in relation to media representations, policy regimes and public opinion. This paper focuses more narrowly on how political climates affect migrant and post-migrant generations, as inhabitants of these European societies. We focus on the impact of ambivalence resulting from perceived lack of recognition as full citizens in European societies among migrants and their descendants. Ambivalence in relation to experiences of particular traits of the political climate is further connected with ideas about mobility—how migrants and descendants may think about return migration—what we discuss in terms of ‘return imaginaries’. Culture, ideology and representations are seen as significant for contemporary politics, not only with expressive but also with formative roles. With this perspective, the analysis explores three politically heated areas of debate: about immigration control, about social cohesion and integration agendas and about terrorist attacks. These three areas were inductively selected, drawing on analysis of qualitative data collected among Pakistani origin migrants and descendants in Norway and the UK. The two countries of residence are purposefully chosen because they in different ways reflect political climates affected by the rise of xenophobia and Islamophobia in Europe.


Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.


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