W088
Migrant associations in Europe: simultaneous incorporation, everyday cosmopolitanisms and actually existing citizenship

Convenors:
Mattia Fumanti (University of St Andrews)
Bruno Riccio (University of Bologna)
Stream:
Workshops
Location:
0.6
Start time:
29 August, 2008 at 9:00
Session slots:
3

Short abstract:

This panel explore the everyday political participation and social negotiation taking place at the intersection of multiple social fields within a plethora of migrant associations in Europe.

Long abstract:

All over Europe one witnesses to a growth and diversification of migrant associations. A plethora of associations emerge through the interactions of migration societies and institutions as well as with those of origin. Traditionally anthropology of migration has focused on ethnic networks as springboards for empowering migrant minorities' access to economic and political opportunities. Less attention has been paid to the multiple ways with which migrants organise themselves in the country of immigration and within transnational social fields. More recently, however, associations revealed themselves a sophisticated lens through which explore various social processes such as the strategies adopted to gain access and recognition to the public sphere, the ambivalent adjusting of various sorts of everyday cosmopolitanisms, the potential of enhancing one's status both here and there through simultaneous incorporation, the constant struggle to improve the concrete and actual experience to be citizen in both sending and receiving contexts. Also, recent researches underline how these associations are both loci for innovation, transformation as much as reproduction and consolidation of cleavages and power asymmetries along gender and intergenerational lines. Institutional discourses tend to reify complex and ambivalent social and cultural processes affected by negotiation between individuals and groups. Such negotiation is influenced in multiple ways by the representation (symbolic as well as political) of migrant associations. Ethnography is particularly important for exploring the everyday political participation and social negotiation within and outside these organisations. Therefore the panel welcomes submissions exploring these topics with the aim at discussing them in a comparative way.