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Session Overview
RN11_01b_P: Migration, Globalization and Emotion
Wednesday, 30/Aug/2017:
2:00pm - 3:30pm

Session Chair: Alberto Martín Pérez, University of Barcelona
Location: PB.2.5
PANTEION University of Social & Political Sciences 136 Syggrou Avenue 17671 Athens, Greece Building: B, Level: 2.

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Care chains and care regimes in Southern Europe: the emotional boundaries of a new type of family

Rossana Trifiletti, Stella Milani

University of Florence, Italy

In comparison with the concept of Global care chain first introduced by Ehrenreich and Hochschild, or Parreñas, and describing the migration of care-workers from the second to the first world, feminist European students (King Lazaridis 2000; Lutz 2008; Anderson 2000; Anderson, Shutes 2014; Léon 2014) underlined some specific features of the care-labour flow of migrant women from Eastern to Southern Europe: its character of shuttle migration of middle aged women to countries which became only recently receiving ones and maintained an important illegal sector in their labour markets as well as in the legalization process of migrants. Such studies described well also the blurred boundary between domestic and care work, between job and emotional involvement and elaborated the concept of care regimes in order to catch the shift from a familisticLTC to a “migrant-in-the-family" system (Bettio 2006; Simonazzi 2009; Léon, Migliavacca 2013). This very specific realm of emerging social practices is a useful field to describe the formulation of new emotional scripts, even if by unspoken feeling rules, since care relationships necessarily involve an enormous amount of contrasting emotions when intesecting market rules. The paper refers to the crossing of results of a survey with institutional informants about a Tuscany Region policy( supporting the matching of care demands and offer) and a former qualitative inquiry in the same territory collecting biographies of (female and male) careworkers coming from Ukraine, Moldova, Romania and Peru and working (or having worked) in cohabitation with frail elderly people in the hard times of the economic crisis. Their agentic reaction in such circumstances suggests recognizing care as common good in new empathy maps of a new form of reconstituted families.

Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Europe: ‘Doing Citizenship’ through Emotion-based Forms of Social Inclusion

Alessandro Pratesi

University of Chester, United Kingdom

Collective assumptions tend to consider refugees and asylum seekers as an inevitable cost or burden to society rather than as an important resource and opportunity. The European humanitarian crisis raises important issues in terms of social inclusion, citizenship, international relations and social change, but it also represents a unique opportunity for Europe to redefine itself and its identity. We need to overcome distorted, ideological and politicised representations of the current crisis and provide evidence of how innovative, creative ways to redefine our notions of citizenship and social inclusion are activated at the level of interactions between refugees and local communities even when forms of exclusion and institutional racism persist at a structural and political level.

This paper highlights the vast potentialities emerging from the intersection of migration studies, citizenship studies, ethics of care studies and the sociology of emotions. The objective is getting insights in the multiple ways in which new forms of citizenship and social inclusion are creatively performed at the local level through emotion-based interactional and ritual dynamics. This requires shifting the focus from the macro- to the micro- level of analysis and to look at the ways in which people constantly construct their sense of entitlement and belonging and produce forms of relational social inclusion through the sentiments and practices of care. The new theoretical perspective on citizenship and social inclusion emerging from this paper is aimed to challenge common assumptions on the problematic nature of migration and to reframe this latter as an integral part of the process of human, social and economic development.

The emotional functions of Muslim religion and their effects on inclusion

Yvonne Albrecht

University of Kassel, Germany

In current debates about processes of migration and integration the fear of Islamic extremism increases. There exist many worries about the question whether Muslim immigrants are able to integrate into historically Christian countries (e.g. Adida, Laitin and Valfort 2016). My paper emphasizes that it is necessary to develop a more differentiated view upon Muslim religion. Despite all fears about political radical Islam it is necessary to consider the emotional functions of Muslim religion – especially in processes of migration. These internal functions are strengthened in religious practices and in using spiritual-religious interpretation frames in interactions. The effects of these practices are described as pacification, reduction of stress, composure and the release of responsibility by Muslim immigrants in Germany. On an action level this enables different forms of agency. In that way the emotional side of Muslim religion makes inclusion possible.

Expressions of ethnic identities – exploring emotional articulations of belonging in minority families

Pille Ubakivi-Hadachi, Kadri Aavik

Tallinn University, Estonia

Families embody some of the most intimate, but at the same time influentially collective sites for identity formation and for the transferral of emotional capital. However, research attempting to analyse how emotional capital and emotion practices frame the familial creation of feelings of ethnic belonging is scarce. Furthermore, as the need to understand the mechanics behind diverse societies’ ethnic inequalities increases, it becomes vital to comprehend the ways in which ethnic belonging can be accompanied by symbolic violence and how equal distribution of emotional capital between different families might alleviate its effects.

Thus, it is most enlightening to examine how ties between ethnic minority family members form the setting for the generation of narrative discourse, imbued with emotives and both conscious and subconscious practices of identity construction. We claim that looking at the expressions of emotions in intergenerational contexts is of utmost importance when trying to understand how ethnic minorities reconstruct and create meaningful identity narratives beyond the reliance on individual experiences and characteristics. Our research shows that parents’ emotional capital and the (un)expressed emotions in stories told or exchanged in families influence the ways in which children incorporate parents’ experiences, understandings and feelings of ethnic belonging as their own. Drawing on narrative interviews with Russian ethnic minority families in Estonia, it is exemplified how emotion practices stemming from emotional capital enhance and create the symbolic capital generated through specific ethnic and national affiliations.

Based on these findings, insights from the sociology of emotions can contribute to the study of ethnic identities.

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