Book Launch

Uncertain Citizenship: Everyday Practices of Bolivian Migrants in Chile

It is necessary to find new modes of thinking about the shifting and uneven ways that migrants in different parts of the world live citizenship in their everyday 

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Dr Megan Ryburn, British Academy Postdoctoral Fellow with the Centre, launches her book Uncertain Citizenship: Everyday Practices of Bolivian Migrants in Chile.

Uncertain Citizenship explores how Bolivian migrants to Chile experience citizenship across borders in their daily lives. Compelled to migrate by economic marginalization and lack of opportunities, in Chile they may face a multitude of challenges in different arenas from difficulties acquiring regular legal status, exploitative labour conditions, poor housing conditions, problems accessing health care and education, social isolation and discrimination to a sense of ambivalence toward and exclusion from certain forms of political participation.

The release of Megan’s book comes as we are entering an era of exacerbated racism and xenophobia. In the global North, the rise of Trump and victory of Brexit have been preceded and followed by an increase in discrimination toward migrants and minorities and a stunning lack of compassion toward refugees. In less well studied contexts of the global South many migrants are also subject to discrimination and exploitation. There is an urgent need to better engage with South-South migration, which accounts for over 50% of migration globally. In Latin America -  particularly South America - intra-regional migration is increasing and diversifying rapidly, challenging how citizenship in the region is understood and experienced.

Drawing on multi-sited ethnographic research, this must read book contributes to debates on the meaning and practice of citizenship in Latin America and for migrants throughout the world. In this time of deep uncertainty for many migrants, it is necessary to seize on the germ of possibility that uncertainty contains and present an alternative politics based on inclusive citizenship.

You can buy Megan’s book here.