Animating Migration Theory I: Subjectivity and the State

Type: Paper
Sponsor Groups:
Poster #:
Day: 4/10/2018
Start / End Time: 8:00 AM / 9:40 AM (Eastern Standard Time)
Room: Evergreen, Sheraton, 4th Floor
Organizers: Francis Collins, Sergei Shubin
Chairs: Francis Collins


As a phenomenon underpinned by fluidity and radical difference, migration always escapes simple modes of representation and reductive theorisations. Indeed, as the dramatic events of the last decade have demonstrated, migration regularly takes shape around new scenarios, follows unpredictable routes and often involves migrant lives that exceed the expectations and restrictions of mainstream migration studies and policy orthodoxies. Over the last few years geographers and other social scientists have started to embrace this excess, generating new and exciting approaches that broaden the boundaries of traditional migration models and dominant migration imaginaries. Renewed interest in the subjects of migration (Findlay et al., 2013; Nail, 2015; Collins 2017; Engebrigsten, 2017), for example, questions the framing of individualised lives and decisions in migration, explores dominant figures of migration and stresses in-stability, openness and becoming of mobile people. Similarly, re-conceptualizations of migration as being-on-the-move driven by desire and potentiality (Papandopolous et al., 2008; Shubin, 2015; Carling and Collins, 2017) opens up conventional definitions of mobility, movement and displacement predicated on binary conceptualizations of place and placelessness. And, rethinking and retheorising approaches to managing and territorializing migration (Anderson, 2013; Tazzioli, 2015; Pecoud, 2015; Shubin, 2016) exposes a version of the world founded on rationality and utility that establishes the powerful divisions between reason and un-reason in shaping cross-border mobilities. This series of three sessions brings together papers that address 1) Subjectivity and the State, 2) Space and Time, and 3) Migrant Materialities. Our aim is to develop new critical understandings of migrant timespaces and animate the field of contemporary migration studies to include insights from different domains of social sciences.


Type Details Minutes Start Time
Introduction Sergei Shubin Swansea University 10 8:00 AM
Presenter Yan Li*, City University of Hong Kong, Contesting the “Authentic Artist Dream”: Territorialising the Precarious Creative Labour in Xiamen 20 8:10 AM
Presenter Elisabeth Scheibelhofer*, Department of sociology University of vienna, Mobile subjectivities betwixt and between? Reflecting the influence of discourses and policy regulations on the social positioning of migrants within time-space relations 20 8:30 AM
Presenter Francis L Collins*, University of Auckland, The Moral Politics of Emigration: Ambitious state strategies and the anxiety of diasporic return 20 8:50 AM
Presenter Alex Ma*, University College London, Self-development and upwards social mobility amongst foreign domestic workers in Singapore 20 9:10 AM
Discussant Sergei Shubin Swansea University 10 9:30 AM

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