Undocumented Migrants: An Arendtian Perspective

Krause, Monika. 2008. Undocumented Migrants: An Arendtian Perspective. European Journal of Political Theory, 7(3), pp. 331-348. ISSN 1474-8851 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

The number of people without rights of residence or work in the territory of Western Europe's nation states is growing. In official representations of political life this group is commonly 'symbolically eliminated' or taken up by an increasingly hostile discourse on 'illegal immigrants' and 'international terrorism'. This article explores what a rereading of the work of Hannah Arendt can contribute to the analytical task of giving an alternative meaning to the presence of this group. Arendt opens up new ways of thinking and acting in view of the present situation. She shows us the rightless migrant as subject to a very specific form of domination - total domination. With Arendt we can see the migrant also as an emblematic philosophical figure, whose status exposes the contradiction of state-centred citizenship and the discourse of human rights. Lastly, the migrant comes into view as a potential political actor; protests by sans papiers become visible as sites of active citizenship.

Item Type:

Article

Identification Number (DOI):

https://doi.org/10.1177/1474885108089175

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Sociology

Dates:

DateEvent
July 2008Published

Item ID:

6197

Date Deposited:

17 Nov 2011 10:47

Last Modified:

29 Apr 2020 15:31

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.

URI:

http://research.gold.ac.uk/id/eprint/6197

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