Multiple Belonging and the Challenges to Biographic Navigation

Joanna Pfaff-Czarnecka University of Bielefeld

Preoccupations with migrant accommodation reveal a predominantly groupist orientation.1 The public and also the academic debates on migration abound in collectivising generalisations when speaking of ‘ethnic groups’, of ‘parallel societies’, of ‘migrants’, or ‘people of migrant background’. Single ‘ethnic or religious groups’, ‘Muslim women’, or ‘Turkish young men’ are often taken as neat units of inquiry. This tendency has recently been the object of a pronounced critique that questions the collectivising a priori assumptions so omnipresent in social science (Brubaker, 2002). 

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