This print is produced by Favianna Rodriguez, the US based artist and activist. She produced it in response to the Associated Press’ decision to stop using the word “illegal” and in honour of Elie Wiesel’s famous quote. I think that this print is quite striking, not only do the vibrant colours catch your attention, but it is bold and direct in its message: fundamentally, it questions the category of “illegal migrant”.
Kenny and Obama in the White House (RTE, 2014)
MRCI Campaign Poster (MRCI, 2014)
Photographs in Solidarity for the Undocumented in Ireland (Twitter, 2014)
Every year the occasion of St. Patrick’s day provides an opportunity for the Irish Government to publicly lobby in support of the undocumented Irish in the US. Indeed, as we can see above, last Friday (14/03/2014) the Taoiseach Enda Kenny met with President Barack Obama.
This March, the Migrant Rights Centre of Ireland (MRCI) launched a solidarity campaign in support of undocumented migrants in Ireland. As I previously discussed, the Irish Government are hypocritical in their attitude towards immigration reform. On the one hand, they explicitly support the undocumented Irish in the US, while on the other, they are quite strict in their approach towards those in a similar situation in Ireland. This campaign by the MRCI highlights this issue in a timely manner and it is encouraging to see so much support on Twitter for the undocumented in Ireland.
Celine Schmitt from the UNHCR tweeted this powerful photograph of a refugee camp in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). These people are fleeing the Central African Republic (CAR). For more information on the situation on CAR see the BBC website and for details on the number of refugees/countries of origin in DRC click here.
The Migration Observatory at the University of Oxford has published a report on how migration in represented in twenty British national newspapers (broadsheet and tabloid) for the period between the beginning of 2010 and the end of 2012. A quantitative analysis was undertaken on an extensive data-set – 58,000 newspaper articles of various forms.
The report goes through in detail the language used in conjunction with certain key words, namely: “migrants”, “immigrants”, “refugees”, and “asylum seekers”. One of the key findings is that the most common word to be used in combination with “immigrants” is “illegal”, while “failed” was the most common word to be used when referring to “asylum”. A number of other associations were also identified and these are detailed in the report.
Not only does this very comprehensive report offer an overall insight into how particular discourses of migration are disseminated into the UK public forum during this time-period, but it also offers a template for researching large corpus’ of data. It is far from an easy task to analyse 58,000 articles in a systematic manner. Therefore, this research and the methodologies employed here can inform research projects in other geographical locations.
The Economist has published a map depicting the current location of the Mexican-origin population in the US. This map is intriguing and enlightening as it also charts the 1848 border between Mexico and the US. Following the 1848 war, Mexico agreed to surrender half of its territory to the US. This included the present-day states of Arizona, California, Nevada, New Mexico, Utah, and Texas (and parts of several other states).
Although the political border between these two countries changed 166 years ago, the population of those of Mexican descent living in these areas has remained high – this of course includes recent arrivals, but also includes those that can trace their origins back to before the “new” border was enforced. In many ways this map reveals the constructed nature of borders and reminds us that the historical context of any present-day issue is vital to a full understanding of a given situation.
The publishing house Verso have compiled a list of key readings for undergraduates (available here). The 24 books are inclusive of works by Marx, Harvey, Lukes, Zizek, Balibar, and Anderson. This list would also be helpful and informative for post-graduate students and academics alike.
Admittedly there are a number of these publications that I have not read as of yet, but I’m thankful to have discovered this list and to begin reading. I’ll probably start with “The Curios Enlightenment of Professor Caritat” by Steven Lukes. It sounds fascinating! Racecraft: The Soul of Inequality in American Life” by the Fields sisters is also now on my “to read” list.
Following on from my recent post, which relayed the top migration issues of 2013 (number 10 to 6); the Migration Information Source has now released issues number 5 to 1 (full details available here).
Issue 5: The multiple challenges associated with European migration
Issue 4: The Syrian refugee crisis
Issue 3: Selling citizenship to investors
Issue 2: Emerging economies amend their immigration policies
Issue 1: The increasing complexity of international migration