Diasporic culture is the culture of Lebanese modernity. Like all modernities, it involves a splitting of the subject between a driven self and a homely self. This can be a painful split of the self, and in some instances, it can be dealt with through a splitting of the married couple rather than a splitting of the self. In this process, it is men who aim to monpolize the possession of what is worthy of being kept and what can be allowed to be given away. The paper examines ethnographically how this logic is integral to the making of diasporic culture.
Light refreshments will be served after the seminar!
Ghassan Hage is the University of Melbourne’s Future Generation Professor of Anthropology and Social Theory and a Fellow of the Australian Academy of the Humanities.
The event is organized by IMER, SKOK, and the Department of Social Anthropology at the University of Bergen.
Time: Thursday 21th of March 2019, 14.15 – 16.00
Place: Seminar room, 9. floor at the Faculty of Social Sciences, Fosswinckels Gate 6
The question of migration is a multifaceted one. It impacts upon individual and social life long before a person’s departure or the crossing of borders. Tuning in with pre- and post-departure perspectives from the African-European border zone, this seminar will argue that migration cannot be understood if addressed as a series of events or movements in the here and now. On the contrary, it must be seen in relation to the experiences and ideas that predate and at the same time reach beyond the temporal settings in which they unfold. For this IMER seminar, Knut Graw from the Institute for Anthropological Research in Africa at the Kathlieke Universiteit Leuven will elaborate on this argument in relation to Senegal as a case study.
Knut Graw (PhD) works at the Institute for Anthropological Research in Africa (IARA) and the Interculturalism, Minorities and Migration Research Centre (IMMRC) of the University of Leuven and, as associated researcher, at Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO), Berlin. His current research focuses on the situation of Senegalese migrants in Southern Europe and the cultural dynamics and transfers in the African-European borderzone.
As the UN declared over 70 years ago, all human beings are entitled to certain inalienable rights. These rights are contested from numerous political and theoretical perspectives. There appears to be a general consensus that these rights, and perhaps especially the right to seek asylum, are not fit for our times and evolving circumstances.This perspective represents a duality. On the one hand, it is connected to anti-globalist movements and right-wing populism. On the other hand, it reflects a progressive impatience with global challenges, such as climate change which threatens the living environment of millions of people.
For this IMER seminar, Johannes Servan, an associate professor in philosophy, will present us with the cosmopolitan critique of human rights regime. What is the cosmopolitan critique, and what are the implications of this critique? How does this perspective alter the character of the moral and political claims of foreigners? The case of global climate change will be used as an example of a morally relevant circumstantial change where it is impossible to deny that we are all to blame – some more than others – for the damaging consequences of a changing climate. Does this change of circumstances require the recognition of new cosmopolitan rights?
Johannes Servan is an assistant professor at Department of Philosophy, UiB. He is currently working on a post-doc proposal on climate refugees.
‘Crimmigration’ has become a critical “catch all” concept for legal scholars, criminologists, and sociologists alike. The concept describes the way two previously separate state control spheres – border control and crime control – influence each other and are part of the same control mechanism experiences and developments. This concept, for example, helps understand Trump’s effort to legitimize the tightening of immigration policy. It refers to both the protection of American economy and jobs and the explicit intent to protect American citizens from terrorists, rapists, and gang members. For this IMER lunch seminar, Synnøve Jahnsen from Rokkansenteret will talk about the usefulness of crimmigration as a concept in other settings. She will draw on empirical examples from her research on prostitution and human trafficking, Norwegian labour market crime policies, and the policing of outlaw motorcycle clubs and youth gangs in Australia and Europe. She will also use the opportunity to promote her new co-edited book “Criminal Justice in the Era of Mass Mobility” and highlight some of the methodological challenges faced by researchers in her field.
A light lunch will be served. All welcome!
Synnøve Jahnsen is a postdoctoral research fellow at Rokkansenteret where she specializes in the sociology of law and criminal justice.
If a LGBTI person can “stay in the closet” in the country of origin, should she then be denied asylum as a refugee? This is currently a thorny issue for several European countries, when facing asylum seekers who apply for protection on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity. For this IMER seminar, Andrea Grønningsæter from the faculty of law at UiB will discuss how this is currently practiced in Norway.
Research has shown that that LGBTI people (lesbian, gay, bisexual, trans and intersex people) often face specific legal and procedural challenges when applying for refugee status. In a number of jurisdictions, including Norway, LGBTI asylum seekers have been denied refugee status with reference to the fact that they can abstain from behavior that may result in a risk of persecution. A gay person can live as a gay within the confines of the home, for example, but not on the streets – and may thus not be granted protection. It is then concluded that the requirement in refugee law of establishing a ‘well-founded fear’ of persecution is not fulfilled, because concealment will mean that the asylum seeker is not revealed to potential persecutors.
In 2012 the Norwegian Supreme Court considered the right to refugee status based on sexual orientation (Rt. 2012 s. 494). In the court’s decision it was stated that a gay person may not be required to hide their sexual orientation in the country of origin to avoid persecution. In cases where it is concluded that the asylum seeker will choose to conceal their sexual orientation, the court established a step-by-step approach for assessing whether the asylum seeker is entitled to refugee status.
For her PhD project, Grønningsæter looks at how the approach that was established by the Supreme Court in 2012 for assessing asylum cases based on sexual orientation or gender identity is interpreted by the courts and the immigration authorities. She explores how the courts and immigration authorities establish the asylum seeker’s reason for concealment, as well as how concepts such as ‘being open’ or ‘discreet’ about sexual orientation or gender identity is understood.
A light lunch will be served at the seminar. Welcome!
Andrea Grønningsæter is a PhD candidate at the Faculty of Law, Bergen University.
Our last lunch seminar this semester: Now re-announced with a new date!
Mahr (the Muslim dower) is regarded as obligatory to Muslim marriages. This means that when a Muslim man marries a Muslim woman, he provides her with a certain financial gift. However, this arrangement is controversial. Does Mahr entail the “sale” of a woman in a Muslim marriage? Because of such concerns, marriage rituals that contain mahr are not approved by the Norwegian state, as they are seen as contravening “Norwegian law and general gender equality principles”.
But does mahr merely entail the “sale” of a woman, or can it serve other purposes as well?
In this seminar, the lived experiences of Norway’s regulation of mahr will be examined. Building on a study of the Iranian diaspora in Norway, Marianne Bøe will explore the forms that mahr can take in contemporary Norwegian society. In her study, Bøe has conducted interviews with members of the Iranian diaspora, and has also studied documents relevant for Norway’s marriage ritual regulation. Does the present regulation of mahr contribute to safeguarding gender equality and the rights of women, or does it have other unintended effects?
The seminar takes place at seminar room 112 at Adm. org, Christies gate 17, on Wednesday 13th of June, from 12.30 to 14.00. A light lunch will be served,
All are welcome!
Marianne Bøe is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Archeology, History, Cultural Studies and Religion (AHKR) at UiB.
What happens with Afghan migrants after they have received a negative decision on their asylum application in Norway? This is the topic of our next IMER seminar, with Halvar Andreassen Kjærre. For several years, Kjærre has followed a group of Afghan migrants around Europe. After their asylum application was rejected in Norway, he sought them out in Italy, Greece, France, Germany, Denmark and Sweden.
This approach makes it possible to understand how various aspects of the migrant’s lives change over time, and between different places in their migration trajectories. Identity, living conditions, social status, legal status, social relations, and desires and hopes are not constant. All of this changes along with their journeys. Following mobile people over time also gives insights into their migratory tactics, and the burden that is imposed upon them by different sovereign states.
The seminar takes place at the seminar room at the ground floor of Sosiologisk institutt, Rosenberggaten 39 the 23rd of may 2017 at 12.30. A light lunch will be served.
Halvar Andreassen Kjærre is a PhD candidate at IMER Bergen / Department of social Anthropology (UiB). His main field of interest is irregular migration, asylum regimes, migration control and mobility studies. The topic of his PhD thesis is the intra-European mobility of Afghan migrants in Europe.
Migration has most often been studied as a spatial process – some people move from one place to another place. But recent research also points to the dimension of time as crucial to the experience of migration. Christine Jacobsen, head of the Centre for Women’s and Gender Research at UiB, is now leading the WAIT-project (Waiting for an uncertain future: The temporalities of irregular migration). This research project aims to unpack the temporalities of ‘irregular migration’. Particular attention will be paid to the socially produced condition of prolonged waiting. The project also looks into how migrants encounter, explore and resist such waiting experiences.
In this seminar Jacobsen will present the WAIT project, and also present preliminary findings from ethnographic fieldwork in Marseille. Based on this, she will offer some initial theoretical reflections on waiting, hope and uncertainty.
The seminar takes place in the Seminar Room at the Department of Sociology, Rosenberggata 39, on the 4th of April from 12.30 to 14.00.
A lunch will be served. Welcome!
Christine Jacobsen is head of the Centre for Women’s and Gender Research at UiB.
How are diaspora populations from South Asia portrayed in popular culture? Sándor Klapscic explores this question by looking at three autobiographical films: East is East, Bend it like Beckham, and West is West. To what extent do the characters hold on to their original culture, and to what extent do they accept the new culture and the host community’s values? Through a detailed analysis of these films, Klapscik argues that filmic analysis can help us to shed light on acculturation processes in diaspora communities.
The seminar takes place in the Seminar Room at the Department of Sociology, Rosenberggata 39, on the 15th of February from 14.15 to 16.00.
Sándor Klapcsik is assistant professor at the Technical University of Liberect. He is a guest researcher at IMER Bergen in February.
Are values transmitted from one generation to the other, or do they change? Are there differences between groups in how values are transmitted between generations? For this lunch seminar, Rebecca Dyer Ånensen will present findings from her PhD-project, which is part of a larger study on the transition to adulthood in Norway and the UK. The broader study looks at three-generation families, and investigates the transmission of values between these generations. Ånensen’s project adds an immigrant perspective, by investigating inter-generational value transmission in families of immigrant origin (from Pakistan and Vietnam). How does the transmission of values look in these families, and how does it compare with the transmission of values in families from majority population?
The seminar takes place at the seminar room at Sosiologisk institutt, Rosenberggata 39, from 12.30 to 14.00. A lunch will be served.
Rebecca Dyer Ånensen is a PhD candidate at the Department of Sociology, UiB.