Accepted paper:

"You simply need that gut feeling!" - Assessing home and belonging in Germany's Commissions for Hardship Cases

Authors:

Marie Fröhlich (University of Göttingen)

Paper short abstract:

The paper sheds light on the German Commissions For Hardship Cases which may grant exceptional rights of residence to people subject to deportation. It focuses on the contested processes of constructing and negotiating notions of belonging and home based on the categories of merit and need.

Paper long abstract:

Thousands of people live in Germany with a precarious status of residence. Often, they have been living in the country for years or even decades, they have built a life and made plans for a future in Germany. But: They are subject to deportation and never know how long their stay might last. In an attempt to take these efforts of home-making into account, the federal states have established so-called Commissions For Hardship Cases: They evaluate petitions and grant those exceptional rights of residency who would supposedly 'suffer most' from having to leave the country. My paper focuses on the contested processes of constructing and negotiating notions of belonging and home based on the categories of merit and need.

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Home is where the heart is (broken)?