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African Migration, Human Rights and Literature

By: Fareda Banda
Media of African Migration, Human Rights and Literature
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Published: 24-12-2020
Format: EPUB eBook (?)
Edition: 1st
Extent: 376
ISBN: 9781509938353
Imprint: Hart Publishing
RRP: £63.00
Online price : £50.40
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Loren Epson

About African Migration, Human Rights and Literature

This innovative book looks at the topic of migration through the prism of law and literature. The author uses a rich mix of novels, short stories, literary realism, human rights and comparative literature to explore the experiences of African migrants and asylum seekers.

The book is divided into two.

Part one is conceptual and focuses on art activism and the myriad ways in which people have sought to 'write justice.' Using Mazrui's diasporas of slavery and colonialism, it then considers histories of migration across the centuries before honing in on the recent anti-migration policies of western states. Achiume is used to show how these histories of imposition and exploitation create a bond which bestows on Africans a “status as co-sovereigns of the First World through citizenship.” The many fictional examples of the schemes used to gain entry are set against the formal legal processes. Attention is paid to life post-arrival which for asylum seekers may include periods in detention. The impact of the increased hostility of receiving states is examined in light of their human rights obligations. Consideration is paid to how Africans navigate their post-migration lives which includes reconciling themselves to status fracture-taking on jobs for which they are over-qualified, while simultaneously dealing with the resentment borne of status threat on the part of the citizenry.

Part two moves from the general to consider the intersections of gender and status focusing on women, LGBTI individuals and children. Focusing on their human rights and the fictional literature, chapter four looks at women who have been trafficked as well as domestic workers and hotel maids while chapter five is on LGBTI people whose legal and literary stories are only now being told. The final substantive chapter considers the experiences of children who may arrive as unaccompanied minors. Using a mixture of poetry and first person accounts, the chapter examines the post-arrival lives of children, some of whom may be citizens but who are continually made to feel like outsiders. The conclusion follows, starting with two stories about walls by Hadero and Lanchester which are used to illustrate the themes discussed in the book.

Few African lawyers write about literature and few books and articles in Western law and literature look at books by or about Africans, so a book that engages with both is long overdue. This book provides fascinating reading for academics, students of law, literature, gender and migration studies, and indeed the general public.

Table Of Contents

Introduction
I. My Law and Literature Journey
II. On Migration
III. On Terminology
IV. On Coverage
V. Structure
VI. Conclusion

PART I
PLOTTING OUR JOURNEY
1. Artivism, Literature, Law and Justice
I. Justice in Law and Literature
II. On Transplants and Universality
III. Literature as Protest in Post-Colonial Settings
IV. Music, Art and Photography
V. On Writing Justice
VI. Critical Race Feminists
VII. Literature and Historic Injustice
VIII. Conclusion
2. Migration Histories
I. On 'Home' and Identity Formation
II. The African Diasporas – Historical Background
III. Contemporary Migration Patterns and Responses
IV. Resistance and the Imperial Legacy
V. Conclusion
3. Of Visas and Visions of a Better Life
I. By any Means Necessary
II. Fictional Strategies for Gaining Entry
III. Processes
IV. The Moral Economy of Smuggling
V. You can Buy Your Way in Legitimately – Wealth and Visa Waivers
VI. On Slippery Categorisations: 'Illegal' Migrant v ('Bogus') Asylum Seeker?
VII. Refugee Law and Literature
VIII. Credibility
IX. Access to Justice
X. Detention
XI. Hostile Environments
XII. Irregularity and Employment
XIII. Irregularity and the Exposure to Exploitation by Non-State Actors
XIV. Public Perception and Prejudice
XV. On Dignity
XVI. 'Home' and the Inhospitable Human Rights Environment
XVII. Status Fracture v. Status Threat
XVIII. On Kindness: Refugee and Migrant Organisations and Volunteers
XIX. Conclusion

PART II
INTERSECTIONS
4. Women's Lives
I. Historical Reasons for Restrictions on Women's Freedom of Movement
II. Women and Refugee Law
III. Trafficking in Law and Literature
IV. Whither Sisterhood? Race and Class in Cleaning Work
V. Norm Development and the Challenges of Implementation
VI. Legislative and Judicial Responses to Modern Slavery
VII. Fictional Maids
VIII. Undiplomatic Exploitation and Abuse
IX. Called to Account: Maids Confront Diplomats in Court
X. Other Forms of Labour
XI. Hotel Maids Wanted: Abuse Included
XII. The Ache: Missing those Left Behind
XIII. Conclusion
5. Sexual Orientation and Gender Identities
I. History, Context and Continuities
II. On Erasure and the Demand for Visibility
III. On Intersectionality
IV. Plural Identities or 'Naming' 0
V. On Fear and Curiosity
VI. Fictional Literature
VII. On Covering
VIII. Religion
IX. Changing People, Changing Laws
X. Migration and Sexuality
XI. Reasons to be Hopeful
XII. Conclusion
6. Children in Literature
I. The Role of Literature
II. Children in Migration
III. Citizen or Migrant?
IV. Laws and 'Cultural Practices'
V. Conclusion
Conclusion
I. Law and Migration
II. Looking Ahead

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