‘Not in my name’: empathy and intimacy in volunteer refugee hosting

Gunaratnam, Yasmin. 2021. ‘Not in my name’: empathy and intimacy in volunteer refugee hosting. Journal of Sociology, 57(3), pp. 707-724. ISSN 1440-7833 [Article]

Gunaratnam, Y. (2020) Not in my Name_AAM.pdf - Accepted Version
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Abstract or Description

This paper draws on 13 narrative interviews with 15 volunteers in an English charity that provides temporary accommodation to destitute migrants and refugees. The aim is to investigate the complexities and ambivalence that inhere in the tensions between hospitality and hostility and the entanglements between conditional and unconditional hospitality, with a focus on stories of empathy. The paper engages Ken Plummer’s (2001; 2003) concept of ‘intimate citizenship’ within what William Walters (2004) calls the assent of “domopolitics”. The latter refers to how immigration is narrativised as a threat to the domestic order of the nation. Hosting in this regard has the potential to invert the logic of domopolitics where the aspiration to govern the state like a home is one that can encounter fluid, albeit conditional and contingent, socialities of care, generosity and hospitality.

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empathy, hosting; hospitality, migration, refugees

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6 August 2020Accepted
23 November 2020Published Online
September 2021Published

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Date Deposited:

29 Oct 2020 10:21

Last Modified:

28 Apr 2022 17:18

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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