1st Edition

Citizens and Refugees Stories from Afghanistan and Syria to Germany

By Joachim C. Häberlen Copyright 2023
    198 Pages
    by Routledge

    198 Pages
    by Routledge

    Following the stories of two dozen refugees from Syria and Afghanistan in 2015, Citizens and Refugees argues that we need to include the histories of these countries, notably the Syrian Revolution, into narratives of the refugee crisis.

    The book thus challenges a framing of the crisis that usually begins only with the moment of people fleeing. The stories it tells show refugees as citizens with a political voice engaged in struggles for participation and democracy, rather than as people in need of rescuing and integrating into new societies. It equally examines the much-celebrated German welcoming culture of 2015, arguing that it silenced political voices of those fleeing to Germany. Based on personal stories and the author’s intimate knowledge of the German welcoming culture, Citizens and Refugees intervenes into political debates about the viability of democracy. Overall, the importance of this volume stems from its suggestion that we would do well to listen to the voice of those coming to Europe as refugees.

    Based on both personal stories and historical analysis, Citizens and Refugees is the ideal resource for upper-level undergraduates, postgraduates, and scholars interested in migration studies and the history of Europe and the Middle East.

    Introduction  1. Part I: Where Stories Begin  2. Part II: Becoming Refugees  3. Part III: The German Welcoming Culture – A New Model of Citizenship?  4. Part IV: Citizenship and Belonging  5. Epilogue: Inspirations of Citizenship




    Joachim C. Häberlen is a historian of Modern European History. He received his PhD in 2011 from the University of Chicago. In 2013, he joined the University of Warwick, where he last worked as Associate Professor. Since April 2022, he lives and works in Berlin.

    ‘A powerful account of the 2015 "summer of migration" and what has followed it, from one of the volunteers on the scene. By drawing our attention to how refugees narrate their own lives - and particularly to what they have to say about politics and civic engagement - Häberlen offers readers not only a persuasive new narration of the refugee crisis, but also a hopeful new way to think about citizenship and belonging.’ - Lauren Stokes, Northwestern University, USA

    'Häberlen’s book is highly relevant to understanding contemporary German society. In the opinion of this reviewer, it would behove German officials and volunteers to heed the author’s advice. The accessibility of the writing will make it a useful resource for educators of college undergraduates and high school students. Moreover, Citizens and Refugees is a methodologically innovative book that will enrich graduate methods courses.' - Felix A. Jiménez Botta, Miyazaki International College, Japan, German History