Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES) Sponsored Roundtable On Forced Migration

Monday, June 24, 2013: 6:00 PM-8:00 PM
Doelenzaal, University Library
Refugees, asylum-seekers and other people whose very mobility has been forced upon them -- those fleeing political and religious persecution, escaping dire economic conditions, are pushed by wars to take refuge in neighboring countries, or the victims of human trafficking, -- have been a growing category of mobile population in the twentieth century and the focus of social policies and political debates. As Stephen Castles noted, the presence of this group is tightly connected to national-level control of borders, state security, and inevitably, global considerations about conflict and development. It also has heightened the experience of exile and the sense of displacement and dependability, almost turning them to a generalized human condition. Europe itself has been profoundly re-shaped by the displacement of peoples historically living in its territory -- one only needs to think about the World War Two and its aftermath, with the refuge, exile and extermination at an unprecedented scale, -- and by the in-flow of displaced persons from outside it. Today, European policies of migration have also came under scrutiny, as deportations of unsuccessful asylum seekers and irregular migrants have increased, raising difficult questions about the policy’s relation to forced, involuntary migration.

This round table draws attention to deportees, who had often been forced out of their countries to begin with, but were never recognized as political subjects in the countries were they attempt to settle down; to specific ethnicized and racialized groups driven into the almost perpetual mobility nearly across all of Europe; and to the uses of uprooting and displacement by European states and their periphery, deployed explicitly in the process of state-building. By interrogating these various aspects of the phenomenon of ‘forced migration’, the round table aims at raising public and scholarly awareness of the politics of displacement in Europe’s past and present. It also brings back the phenomenon into the orbit of Migration Studies, but not as a separate category but as part and parcel of a more holistic understanding of global

Olga Sezneva
William Walters , Barak Kalir and Liza Schuster
See more of: Session Proposals
<< Previous Session | Next Session >>