Centre for Global Migration Studies (CeMig)

Centre for Global Migration Studies (CeMig)

Migration is one of the most pressing and complex issues of the 21st century. The Centre for Global Migration Studies (CeMig) brings together scholars of
Göttingen Campus from six different faculties, plus the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity (MPI-MMG). Together they study the complex challenges of migration on a global scale under very different thematic and regional foci, that by engaging in interdisciplinary collaboration and by pooling together diverse methodological approaches. CeMig strengthens research and teaching in the area of Migration Studies in addition to establishing innovative forms of knowledge transfer.

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"Public Health and Migration from a global and interdisciplinary perspective"
Interdisciplinary Research Group (2022-2024)

The Covid-19 crisis and its global management have brought the question of the protection of life and the right to health to the fore with new urgency. The pandemic appears to show that the supposedly most essential and fundamental rights in international and national norm-building enshrined in global, regional and national constitutions, namely health coverage and entitlements in political practice are unevenly distributed across countries on a global level. This is especially the case regarding migrant populations and post-colonial minorities. Against this backdrop, the interdisciplinary research group aims to address how the “protection of life” and the “right to health” are defined, encoded and implemented in relation to migrant populations and post-colonial minorities, as well as which ethical, social and political questions arise from this practice.

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The material effects of Whiteness: Institutional Racism in the German Welfare State

New publication by Aleksandra Lewicki, CeMig guest researcher in the research group "Public Health and Migration"

The scholarship on institutional racism has emerged from contexts such as Australia, the UK or the US. Less is known about how racism operates within institutional settings elsewhere. What is more, our understanding of Whiteness is shaped by this Anglocentric literature. In this article, I explore the contextual features of Whiteness in residential care in Germany. More specifically, I trace how institutional routines shape affective subjectivities and thereby develop material effects. The study draws on 17 expert interviews and 20 interviews with managers of care homes run by the two largest providers, the Christian welfare associations Caritas and Diakonie. Respondents frequently highlighted their organisation’s commitment to equality, which they saw grounded in its Christian ethos, their professional self-understanding as carers, or Germany’s post-racial nationhood. Paradoxically, however, my analysis shows that respondents also deployed these ‘representations of self’ to justify access and service quality differentials. On this basis, I argue that Whiteness materialises via self-ascribed civility, ‘goodness’ and egalitarianism in the German welfare state. Signified by visual markers, Whiteness emerges from projections of purity, innocence and good intentions. In varying ways, groups distinctively racialised as ‘Other’, notably as ‘Black’, ‘Muslim’ or ‘Eastern European’, are placed outside this notion of Whiteness.

More information can be found here