1st Edition

Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies

Edited By Robin Cohen, Carolin Fischer Copyright 2019
    384 Pages
    by Routledge

    382 Pages 4 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    The word ‘diaspora’ has leapt from its previously confined use – mainly concerned with the dispersion of Jews, Greeks, Armenians and Africans away from their natal homelands – to cover the cases of many other ethnic groups, nationalities and religions. But this ‘horizontal’ scattering of the word to cover the mobility of many groups to many destinations, has been paralleled also by ‘vertical’ leaps, with the word diaspora being deployed to cover more and more phenomena and serve more and more objectives of different actors.

    With sections on ‘debating the concept’, ‘complexity’, ‘home and home-making’, ‘connections’ and ‘critiques’, the Routledge Handbook of Diaspora Studies is likely to remain an authoritative reference for some time. Each contribution includes a targeted list of references for further reading. The editors have carefully blended established scholars of diaspora with younger scholars looking at how diasporas are constructed ‘from below’. The adoption of a variety of conceptual perspectives allows for generalization, contrasts and comparisons between cases.

    In this exciting and authoritative collection over 40 scholars from many countries have explored the evolving use of the concept of diaspora, its possibilities as well as its limitations. This Handbook will be indispensable for students undertaking essays, debates and dissertations in the field.

    Diaspora studies: an introduction  PART I: EXPLORING AND DEBATING DIASPORA  1. Diaspora before it became a concept  2. Diaspora studies: past, present and promise  3. Key methodological tools for diaspora studies: combining the transnational and intersectional approaches  4. The social construction of diasporas: conceptual development and the Rwandan case  5. Diasporas as social movements?  6. Performing diaspora  7. Embodying belonging: diaspora’s racialization and cultural citizenship  8. Music, dance and diaspora  9. Diasporic filmmaking in Europe  10. Writing in Diaspora  PART II: COMPLEX DIASPORAS  11. Making and ‘faking’ a diasporic heritage  12. Translanguaging and diasporic imagination  13. Multi-religious diasporas: rethinking the relationship between religion and diaspora  14. Homelessness and statelessness: possibilities and perils  15. Diaspora and class, class and diaspora  16. Working-class cosmopolitans and diaspora  17. Transversal crossings and diasporic intersections  18. Intersectionalizing diaspora studies  19. Bridging the mobility–sedentarism and agency–structure dichotomies in diasporic return migration  PART III: HOME AND HOME-MAKING  20. Unravelling the conceptual link between transnationalism and diaspora: hometown networks  21. Deportees as ‘reverse diasporas’  22. Diasporicity: relative embeddedness in transnational and co-ethnic networks  23. Moral comforts of remaining in exile: snapshots from conflict-generated Indonesian diasporas  24. Islamic schooling and the second generation: a diaspora perspective  25. Diaspora and home: interrogating embodied precarity in an era of forced displacement  26. Diasporas and political obligation  PART IV: CONNECTING DIASPORA  27. Diaspora and religion: connecting and disconnecting  28. Digital diasporas  29. Diaspora politics and political remittances: a conceptual reflection  30. Diasporas building peace: reflections from the experience of Middle Eastern diasporas  31. Postcolonial states, nation-building and the (un)making of diasporas  32. The plasticity of diasporic identities in super-diverse cities  33. Displaced imaginations, bodies and things: materiality and subjectivity of forced migration  PART V: CRITIQUES AND APPLIED DIASPORA STUDIES  34. Preserving or discarding diaspora  35. Disconnecting from home: contesting the salience of the diaspora  36. Why engage diasporas?  37. Diaspora mobilizations for conflict: beyond amplification and reduction  38. Diasporas and development  39. Diasporas and the politics of memory and commemoration  40. At home in diaspora: the Babylonian Talmud as diasporist manifesto


    Robin Cohen is Professor Emeritus of Development Studies and Senior Research Fellow, Kellogg College, University of Oxford. He writes on globalization, development, migration, creolization, diasporas and identity. His books include: Frontiers of identity: the British and the others (1994), Global diasporas: an introduction (2008), Encountering difference: diasporic traces, creolizing spaces (2016) (with Olivia Sheringham) and Island societies (2017). He is currently writing an intellectual history of key intellectuals at eight universities where he has held academic appointments and, with Nicholas Van Hear, developing a solution to the problem of mass displacement using the notion of ‘Refugia’.

    Carolin Fischer is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Neuchâtel, Switzerland. Her current work examines how migrant descendants experience, interpret, appropriate and modify otherness in their everyday lives. In 2015 Carolin completed a doctorate in Development Studies at the University of Oxford. Her doctoral thesis is about the lives and civic engagements of Afghans in Germany and the UK. During her time at Oxford, Carolin worked as a research and teaching assistant at the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS), the International Migration Institute (IMI) and the Refugee Studies Centre (RSC). Carolin’s areas of interest are identity formation, inter- and intra-group dynamics and forms of civic and political engagement in the context of migration and mobility. Her recent work has appeared in Ethnicities, The Journal of Intercultural Studies and Global Networks.