The theme of Migration and Identity is of special concern at a time both of massive worldwide migration and of apparently intensifying national, ethnic, and racial conflicts. Problems of migration and the resulting reconfigurations of social identity are fundamental issues for the twenty-first century. This volume spans the whole complex global web of migratory patterns with contributions linking Africa, Asia, Australia, Europe, North and South America, without losing the particularities of local and personal experience.
This paperback edition in the Memory and Narrative series explores these issues and the sustaining or abandoning of memory and identity as people move between fundamentally different cultures, in a number of recent social settings, from a number of methodological perspectives. These focused "case studies" offer glimpses into the interior migration experiences, into the processes of constructing and reconstructing identity without forgetting that, both theoretically and empirically, the problem of identity is complex and multifaceted. All of the essays rely heavily on oral history and personal testimony, highlighting the experience of individuals and small groups, without ignoring the tension that exists between the local and the global.
Memories of oppression or totalitarianism are one of the driving forces behind some of these migrations; and the transmission of memories and myths between family generations is one of the ways in which migrations are interpreted. In looking both backward and forward, Migration and Identity, offers an acute view of migratory patterns and their impact on the newcomers and the local cultures. It will be of interest to cultural and oral historians and researchers of concerned with migration and integration.