Special Issue "Critical Studies/Perspectives on Migration and the Migrant Experience"

A special issue of Societies (ISSN 2075-4698).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (28 January 2021).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Krystal M. Perkins
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Psychology, Purchase College, SUNY, 735 Anderson Hill RoadPurchase, NY 10577, USA
Interests: Krystal is a social psychologist by training with a background in classical and critical theories. She has been interested in the ways in which members of non-dominant groups in society form, manage, and negotiate their identity in relation to other groups. Her research also considers how high and low-status groups negotiate intergroup interactions and perceive ideologies of diversity and multiculturalism
Dr. Arita Balaram
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Critical Social/Personality and Environmental Psychology, The Graduate Center, CUNY, 365 Fifth Avenue, Rm. 5103, New York, NY 10016, USA
Interests: Arita's research interests are in the intersections of race, gender, and migration. She is interested in community-engaged research and understanding how research can be used to support ongoing social justice efforts by those most marginalized by systemic oppression

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

A significant portion of scholarship has represented refugees, asylum seekers, and immigrants of color (with and without papers) as passive recipients of Western generosity (Espiritu), objects of rescue, suffering, and voicelessness, and/or targets of profiling, surveillance, and detention. To decenter these monoliths, Societies is soliciting empirical (qualitative and quantitative) and conceptual/theoretical papers that offer a critical examination of migration and of the migrant experience. Specifically, this Special Issue aims to publish work from scholars across disciplines that consider: (1) migratory practices as deeply intermingled with colonial/neocolonial practices and processes, imperialism, war, displacement, racialized state violence, and globalization; (2) a reconceptualization of the migrant experience, not grounded in an implicit deficient model, but migrants as complex and multifaceted individuals, negotiating nation–state–borders–home, papers, identity, etc.; and (3) migrant subjectivities, in regard to the varied ways migrants oppose, subvert, and resist dominant discourses, similar to novelist Viet Thanh Nguyen sentiments of “having the unheard own their share of the means of representation.” For the type of the papers, we will only accept Articles, Reviews and Conceptual Papers.

Dr. Krystal M. Perkins
Dr. Arita Balaram
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as conceptual papers are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a double-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Societies is an international peer-reviewed open access quarterly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1200 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

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Article
We Are More Than Paperless People: Reflections on Creating Spaces, Narratives and Change with Undocumented Communities
Societies 2021, 11(2), 47; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11020047 - 14 May 2021
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Abstract
In this piece, we share some insights gleaned from oral histories of immigrant organizers involved in New Jersey state campaigns for access to higher education, weaving them with scholarly personal narratives (Nash & Viray, 2013) from the authors on their own youth organizing [...] Read more.
In this piece, we share some insights gleaned from oral histories of immigrant organizers involved in New Jersey state campaigns for access to higher education, weaving them with scholarly personal narratives (Nash & Viray, 2013) from the authors on their own youth organizing and/or experience working in an undocumented student support center. We are guided by the following questions: (1) How do New Jersey immigrant organizers make meaning of and create spaces of hope and home through their organizing? (2) What propels this work and sustains it across cohorts of organizers? We discuss five general areas in response: the experience of invisibility and organizing efforts that aim to counter it, the co-construction of homespaces within higher education institutions, the importance of (re)setting narratives, celebrating wins while pressing for more, and the intergenerational work that inspires and sustains change. We close the article with reflections on the ways in which formal and everyday organizing are acts of love and care, from which home is collectively built. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Critical Studies/Perspectives on Migration and the Migrant Experience)
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Article
Testimonio and Counterstorytelling by Immigrant-Origin Children and Youth: Insights That Amplify Immigrant Subjectivities
Societies 2021, 11(2), 38; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11020038 - 21 Apr 2021
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Abstract
This article seeks to amplify our scholarly view of immigrant identity by centering the first-person narratives of immigrant-origin children and youth. Our theoretical and methodological framework centers on testimonio—a narrative practice popularized in Latin American social movements in which an individual recounts a [...] Read more.
This article seeks to amplify our scholarly view of immigrant identity by centering the first-person narratives of immigrant-origin children and youth. Our theoretical and methodological framework centers on testimonio—a narrative practice popularized in Latin American social movements in which an individual recounts a lived experience that is intended to be representative of a collective struggle. Our goal is to foreground first-person narratives of childhood as told by immigrant-origin children and youth in order to gain insight into what they believe we should know about them. We argue for the power of testimonio to communicate both extraordinary hardship and everyday experiences and that—through this storytelling—immigrant-origin children and youth also express imagined futures for themselves and their loved ones. Through our analysis of ethnographic recordings of testimonio shared by Latin American immigrant children and multimedia testimonios created by immigrant-origin adolescents with roots in the Caribbean and West Africa, we gain a fuller understanding of immigrant subjectivities and push the boundaries of “the immigrant experience” still prevalent in mainstream discussions today. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Critical Studies/Perspectives on Migration and the Migrant Experience)
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Article
Crafting New Narratives of Diasporic Resistance with Indo-Caribbean Women and Gender-Expansive People across Generations
Societies 2021, 11(1), 2; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc11010002 - 01 Jan 2021
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Abstract
This study used participatory oral history and digital archiving to explore two interrelated questions: How do Indo-Caribbean women and gender-expansive people across generations experience processes of storytelling? What are the challenges and possibilities of oral history and digital archiving for constructing alternative histories [...] Read more.
This study used participatory oral history and digital archiving to explore two interrelated questions: How do Indo-Caribbean women and gender-expansive people across generations experience processes of storytelling? What are the challenges and possibilities of oral history and digital archiving for constructing alternative histories and genealogies of resistance? In the first phase of the study, twelve Indo-Caribbean women and gender-expansive people across generations participated in an oral history workshop where they were introduced to oral history methods, co-created an interview guide, conducted oral history interviews of one another, and engaged in collective reflection about processes of storytelling. In the second phase, four co-authors of a community-owned digital archive participated in semi-structured interviews about their work to craft new narratives of diasporic resistance rooted in the everyday stories of Indo-Caribbean women and gender-expansive people. In this paper, I analyze how Indo-Caribbean women and gender-expansive people practice resistance by breaking silences in their communities around gender-based oppression, shift norms through producing analyses of their own stories, and reshape community narratives. Furthermore, I explore how oral history participants and co-authors of a digital archive understand the risks associated with sharing stories, raising the ethical dilemmas associated with conceptualizing storytelling as purely liberatory. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Critical Studies/Perspectives on Migration and the Migrant Experience)

Other

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Concept Paper
Flowing between the Personal and Collective: Being Human beyond Categories of Study
Societies 2020, 10(4), 94; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/soc10040094 - 27 Nov 2020
Viewed by 675
Abstract
Caught between different structures of identity hierarchies, queer and trans Asian American experiences have been systematically erased, forgotten, or purposely buried; as such, their experiences have often been minimized. In this paper, we seek to reimagine personhood in psychology through the perspectives of [...] Read more.
Caught between different structures of identity hierarchies, queer and trans Asian American experiences have been systematically erased, forgotten, or purposely buried; as such, their experiences have often been minimized. In this paper, we seek to reimagine personhood in psychology through the perspectives of queer and trans Asian American subjectivities. Beginning with a brief discussion on the impacts of coloniality on conventional conceptualizations of who counts as human, we then consider how this is taken up in psychology, especially for multiply marginalized folx. Moving beyond the possibilities of representational politics, we explore possible decolonial frameworks and alternative methodologies in psychology to center queer and trans Asian American personhoods and to see them as more than just research participants. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Critical Studies/Perspectives on Migration and the Migrant Experience)
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