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Adamson, Fiona, Chung, Erin Aeran and Hollifield, James F. (2024) 'Rethinking the migration state: historicising, decolonising, and disaggregating.' Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 50 (3). pp. 559-577.

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This essay (re-) introduces the concept of the migration state and its significance for migration studies in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, discussing its intellectual history and relationship to Hollifield’s wider body of work. The authors lay out the main features of the ideal-typical liberal democratic migration state before discussing the extent to which it can be used to describe and theorise a wider variety of migration states, paying attention to the particularities of state development across different cases and regions, but also looking forward to how imperial and colonial legacies may shape future state responses to managing migration and mobility. Drawing on the individual contributions to this special issue, we suggest three theoretical and conceptual moves that can enrich our understanding of contemporary migration states: historicisation, decolonisation, and disaggregation. We discuss how the articles in this special issue engage with the migration state concept in ways that incorporate developments in migration studies over the past twenty years, using the concept to push the field in new temporal and comparative directions that open up the possibility of a more global approach to understanding migration. The essay concludes by looking at the future of the migration state and suggests areas for further research.

Item Type: Journal Article
Keywords: Migration state; liberal paradox; migration; immigration; emigration; diaspora; state; migration governance; state-building; liberalism; rights; imperialism; colonialism; postcolonial societies; post-imperial states; developmental state; rentier state
SOAS Departments & Centres: Departments and Subunits > Department of Politics & International Studies
ISSN: 1369183X
DOI (Digital Object Identifier):
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2023 09:15
Funders: European Union

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