Expoloring Diversity Seminar Seriens Workshop

December 17, 2007 @ 9:00 am – 4:00 pm

Expoloring Diversity Seminar Seriens Workshop

“Transnational(ism)” in IMER-research – Networks, boundaries and mobilisation.

In recent years there has been a general increase in empirical research and theoretical engagement with transnationalism and transnational networks. In regard to the field of international migration and ethnic relations, transnationalism has been hotly debated and a central concern for research. Some approaches have focussed on the more manifest, organizational aspects of relations between sending and receiving countries, such as studies of remittances, migration patterns etc. Others have focussed on phenomenological dimensions; transnational social imaginaries, the stretching of lifeworlds in time and in space. Another division is between research following a more traditional Diaspora-approach, exploring the networks and transactions between “mother”- and recipient countries, and research focussing on migrants’ “double consciousness” as a more persistent dimension in the migrant situation. Both approaches include the meaning and the politics of borders and boundaries, but in different ways. Whereas the first approach tends to centre nation and ethnicity as imperative identity-dimensions in transnational mobilisation, the second approach opens other venues for research on transnational imagination and action. This second approach is perhaps more clearly envisioned in Paul Gilroys work on the Black Atlantic. Gilroy’s transnationalism is one that looks beyond ethnicity and nation as identity-construction dimensions, and focuses on the potential transnational solidarity stemming from being reduced to the other within the nation-state framework. If the first, and traditional, transnationalism approach focuses on the positive aspects of national and ethnic identities, the second approach departs from the negative aspects of the very same identities. These different approaches can again be seen to lead to different research focuses and also to different forms of political mobilisation.

This workshop brings together scholars who work in the intersection between transnationalism research and IMER-research. The purpose is to critically discuss what is meant by the terms “transnational” and “transnationalism”, and to provide some theoretical, methodological and empirical guidelines to research. How do we distinguish between “transnational” and “postnational”, how is the conceptualisation of transnational(-ism) linked to debates in globalisation theory, and how do we incorporate material, political and cultural aspects in research on transnationalism and migration?

IMER-Bergen has at present three research projects in the field of transnationalism research. Two of these focus on transnational mobilisation among young adults of ethnic minority background, the third focuses on different forms of transnational relations and mobilities, their spatial logics and the politics of space/place.

WORKSHOP program

“Transnational(ism)” in IMER-research – Networks, boundaries and mobilisation –

Tid : Mandag 17 Desember 2007, 10.00-17.00
Sted : UiB, Lauritz Meltzers hus, 9 etasje, Seminarrom.


10.00 Mette Andersson, UiB
” Begrep og forskningsfokus”
10.30 Thomas Olesen, University of Aarhus
“The Porous Public”
11.00 Spørsmål og diskusjon
11.30 Pause
11.45 Garbi Schmidt, Danish National Institute of Social Research
“Transnational or Universal? Muslim Identity Forming Across National Boundaries”
12.15 Spørsmål og diskusjon
12.45 Lunsj
13.45 Øivind Fuglerud, UiO
“Transnational practises and diasporic identification: Lessons from the Tamil case”
14.15 Spørsmål og diskusjon
14.45 Pause
15.00 Elisabeth Eide, UiO
“Caricatures turning transnational – and landing in national contexts”
15.30 Spørsmål og diskusjon
16.00 Generell diskusjon (slutt 17.00)