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Course Details

Course TitleMigrants, Refugees, & Borders
CampusBryn Mawr
SemesterFall 2019
Registration IDANTHB339001
Credit1.00
DepartmentInternational Studies
InstructorFioratta, Susanna
Times and DaysW 01:10pm-03:30pm
Room LocationDAL300
Course InfoClass Number: 1229 Borders are often taken for granted as natural divisions in the world, but they are actually the products of political, historical, and social processes. Border crossing is often framed as an aberration or even a crisis, but people have moved for as long as humans have existed. This course approaches borders from an anthropological perspective by foregrounding the experiences of the people who move across them. We explore the interconnected categories of migrants and refugees to understand how people cross borders under different kinds of circumstances: some voluntary, others fleeing conflict or persecution, and still others that seem to fall between these ideal types. We will critically examine how migrants and refugees are qualitatively described and quantitatively defined, as these discursive constructions often determine legal status and reception in host countries, and also inform governmental and humanitarian responses. We will read a selection of ethnographies examining different kinds of migrant and refugee movements in Africa, Europe, the Americas, and Asia, culminating in an extended case study of Africans in China.; Current topic description: Borders are often taken for granted as natural divisions in the world, but they are actually the products of political, historical, and social processes. Border crossing is often framed as an aberration or even a crisis, but people have moved for as long as humans have existed. How do we make sense of these contradictions? How do borders give meaning to movement? How do people who move—or, who desire to move—engage, evade, or make use of borders? This course approaches borders from an anthropological perspective by foregrounding the experiences of the people who move across them. Focusing on specific instances of mobility in their sociocultural contexts, we will investigate moving and belonging across borders from the viewpoints of people variously categorized as migrants and refugees, giving particular attention to how these categories take on meaning in everyday life. From here, we will consider how broader issues of state power and sovereignty, belonging and exclusion, and global inequality intersect with the movements of people around the world. Approach: Course does not meet an Approach; Enrollment Cap: 19; 15 Seats reserved for students in the 360 Program. 4 seats for Anthropology major at Bryn Mawr. Throughout human history, diverse peoples have been interacting with each other and their environment on the borderlands--places shaped by encounters across difference, with significant implications on culture and livelihood. This cluster focuses on the core issue of borderland encounters, and addresses a variety of common themes such as the concept and nature of borderlands, cultural exchange, power relations, ethnic experience, human- environmental interactions, and (trans)nationalism. The field study will explore the borderlands along China’s Southwest Silk Road through Yunnan province, which encompass diverse ethnic cultures such as Tibetans and Thai in Shangri-La and Xishuangbanna and borderlands environmental experiences along the Tea-Horse trading route. If you are interested in the 360 program, you must fill out the application which is due on April 3rd at NOON by clicking on link. https://www.brynmawr.edu/360/fall-2019-application-Borderlands. This 360 cluster includes enrolling in, EALC B353 & ENVS H118.
Miscellaneous InfoClass Nbr: 1229 NOAPPR;
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