Discrimination, Recognition, and Belonging. A Sociological Approach to the Situation of Refugees in Germany
University of Education Freiburg, Germany
In our current research we try to understand how youth und younger adults who are regarded as people with African decent deal with discrimination. We conducted biographical interviews with black Germans and refugees from Africa, focused of their experiences with discrimination, their different ways of coping of discrimination, and the social conditions of agency and social resilience. A central finding of our research is that the relevance of discrimination for identities and social practices cannot be understood adequately if only experiences with discrimination are taken into consideration. Our research reveals that Identities and practices of people who are confronted with discrimination are articulated with experiences of discrimination as well as of recognition, and the way both sides are set in relation and evaluated. Therefore a complex and dialectic approach is necessary. Based on our research we propose that experiences with discrimination and recognition lead to a sense of one’s position, which influences the coping with discrimination in schools, at the workplace or in the context of police controls.
A further finding of our research is that young refugees have to deal with a situation, which is characterized by a fundamental insecurity of their future prospects, and that they are not able to understand the legal and political conditions which are decisive for their future. Before this background any explanation of success and failure in the case of young refugees has to take into account the importance of professional and informal social support, and especially the enormous capacities and affords (“Eigenleistungen”) of young refugees to accomplish the process of their social integration.
Struggle for Recognition: Educational Strategies of Syrian Kurdish refugees in Turkey
Uppsala University, Sweden
This study examines Kurdish families who have migrated from North Syria to a city in the South-East of Turkey called Diyarbakir due to the Syrian civil war that began in 2011. The aim is to explore the trajectories, experiences, sense of belonging and educational strategies of this ethnic group after they have crossed borders, yet still remain within the unrecognized borders of Kurdistan.
Mainly deriving from Sayad’s sociological theories and Bourdieu’s concepts of capital, habitus and strategies, this study analyses Kurdish families’ educational strategies in the light of Kurdistan inter-migration. Drawing from ten qualitative interviews conducted in November 2017 of Syrian Kurdish families residing in Turkey, the socio-economic background of the families is analysed in relation to their economic resources, social networks, educational and linguistic assets. This way, the study provides an insight and understanding on how education is perceived by Kurdish families from Syria, and what kind of educational strategies they use depending on their different types of resources or lack of them.
The study concludes that educational strategies do not specifically differ based on the economic resources the families possess, however it differs based on factors such as the families’ educational background, language, stigmatisation and the possibility of a return to Syria. Furthermore, findings show that immigrant children’s education in Turkey acts as an impediment for their parents’ return to Syria by also interpreting the reflections of double absence on this particular ethnic group.
Declinations of the Inclusion of Foreign Students in Formal Educational Contexts: from the Tactics of Emergency Management to Preventive Strategies
University of Enna "Kore", Italy
The increasingly structural presence of foreign students in Italy has required a reshaping of school intercultural practices in order to reduce inequalities and deconstruct the boundaries between cultures in the micro-context of the classroom. This reshaping should start from the assumption that the presence of diversity is a precious asset to be valued as it creates a context of experimentation that reproduces on a smaller scale the characteristics of the multicultural society in which we live today.
This paper presents some results of a content analysis of Sicilian schools’ official documents (PTOF, RAV), carried out under the international research project “Hostis-Hospes. Connecting people for a Europe of diversities”, project funded by the European Commission*.This paper aimed at identifying the different shades of the concept of inclusion of foreign minors in formal educational contexts, both from a point of view of the values (that is the objectives, vision and mission declared by the schools) and the initiatives (that is the effective presence and content of the projects carried out in the schools). In particular, we examined the different meanings associated with the concept of inclusion and its variations, in terms of specific vocabularies, related specifically to the foreign students’ incidence rate in the schools involved, starting from the following research questions: on which contents do the documents focus their “attention structure” and how does it change according to the more or less significant presence of foreign students in the classroom? How much do the inclusive strategies of the Sicilian schools move from a preventive point of view rather than from a simple "emergency" management?
* Programma REC-RIGHTS, EQUALITY AND CITIZENSHIP WORK PROGRAMME-call REC-VAW-AG-2016-02Round 1–CUP n. J15E17000000006.
Discrimination or just Attribution? Scrutinizing the Effects behind Perceived Discrimination among Migrant Students
University of Education, Freiburg
In the context of growing social heterogeneity, the integration of immigrants is more and more becoming the focus of political efforts and social science. Experiences of ethnic discrimination are a possible explanatory factor for different dimensions of ethnic inequality like the persistent severe ethnic inequalities in education.
For reasons of research pragmatism, data from quantitative surveys, which measure perceived discrimination, is mostly used. These statements are often used as a proxy for actual discrimination, although they can – in addition to actual experiences of discrimination – also reflect the results of other processes like attribution. The generally presumed positive correlation between perceived and actual discrimination has not yet been empirically proven.
There’s therefore a great need for reliable quantitative data on experiences of discrimination. We need to know what factors influence respondents' statements about discrimination and understand the underlying processes behind quantitative data of perceived ethnic discrimination. Hence, the aim of my paper is to identify and empirically validate the determinants of perceived discrimination among students with migration background.
After the theory-based genesis of an explanation model, the effects of potential influencing factors will be examined stepwise with data from the Socio-Economic Panel (SOEP) and the National Educational Panel Study (NEPS). Through the systematic identification and control of potential influencing factors, it is possible to assess the connection between subjective measurement and objective facts: If the students' statements prove to be robust against ethnic and psychological processes, this would suggest a strong correlation between perceived and actual discrimination. However, if other factors prove to be the key to explaining the statements about perceived discrimination, these should be taken into account in future analyses.