Mapping the invisible experiences of displacement

From an administrative point-of-view migrants can be categorized as “refugees” or “internally displaced persons”. But beyond the purview of state bureaucracies and humanitarian agencies, there are of course also the formally invisible migrants, people experiencing various degrees of involuntary displacement. This is the subject of a new book in the planning.

Whether formally categorized as refugees or not, migrants experience various degrees of vulnerability and insecurity. The subjective experiences of displacement may be more pressing for migrants who are unlikely to be considered as formal refugees.

“Even within families or households, the relative experience of displacement may differ significantly between individual family members. These dynamics of internal experiences of displacement within families or households tend to remain invisible to outside observers, sometimes even to neighbours”, says Jesper Bjarnesen, senior researcher at the Nordic Africa Institute, who is planning a proposal to Routledge for an edited volume in the African Studies series.

Call for papers
Bjarnesen invites other researcher to send abstracts addressing the dynamics of invisible displacement, on the basis of empirical case studies of African transnational spaces. The deadline for submissions is 15 March 2016.

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