Divergent discourses, children and forced migration

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Doná, Giorgia
Veale, Angela
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Experiences of refugee, internally displaced and migrant children in different contexts (such as post-conflict and resettlement) are often considered separately, yet closer analysis points to the existence of commonalities across transnational locations and a need to articulate the ways in which global systems, state policies and migration processes impact on the lives of these children. Current discourses, policies and practices towards forced migrant children show that there are divergent and at times conflicting constructions of childhood and migration, and implicitly reveal the positions that these children occupy in relation to the nation-state system. In this article we focus on the existence of common divergent discourses that emerge from contexts in the global North and South, including Rwanda, Uganda, Ireland and the United Kingdom, where we have carried out research with children forced to move. Our overall aim is to re-politicise the position of child and youth forced migration through an analysis of three sets of divergent or ambivalent discourses: a) forced-migrant children as product of and threat to the nation-state; b) ‘visible’ and ‘invisible’ children; and c) the ‘psychological’ and the ‘political’ child.
Migration , Children , Political narratives , Psychology , Africa , Europe , Refugee , Political , Discourse , Rwanda , Uganda
Doná, G. and Veale, A. (2011) 'Divergent discourses, children and forced migration', Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 37 (8), pp. 1273-1289. doi:10.1080/1369183X.2011.590929
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© 2011, Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Accepted Manuscript of an article published by Taylor & Francis in Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies in September 2011, available online: http://www.tandfonline.com/10.1080/1369183X.2011.590929