Migration and forced migration (or refugee) scholarship has received significant critique from various positions across national and disciplinary divides. This paper draws on critiques focusing on Eurocentrism, ahistoricity and the analytical erasure of dehumanisation. It then develops the insights from anti, post, and decolonial scholarship that could generatively contribute to moving beyond extant limitations. Taking the case of Syrian refugees in Lebanon, it briefly sketches the generative potential and contribution of such a re-framing – particularly absent from research focusing on the Arab-majority world. The paper concludes by inviting further research and an advancement of the conversation between migration and refugee studies and the developing ‘decolonial turn’.
Keywords: Migration studies, refugee studies, decolonial theory, connected sociologies, Eurocentrism, Lebanon
Ali Kassem is a Lecturer at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the National University of Singapore. Ali received his PhD from the University of Sussex and completed his postdoctoral research at the University of Edinburgh. In 2020-2021 he was an early career fellow with the Arab Council for Social Sciences funded by the Carnegie Corporation of New York.
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