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Our MA students presented their draft research proposals

On 8 June 2017 fifteen of our MA in Migration and Displacement students gave PowerPoint presentations on their draft research proposals and received comments and questions from ACMS staff and their fellow students. This was one of the last steps before they submit their research proposals.

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Mapping xenophobic violence in South Africa: Opportunities and pitfalls of hot-spot and causal analysis in combatting xenophobic violence

20 June 2017

As part of the Lunchtime Seminar Series, the African Centre for Migration & Society invites you to a seminar titled Mapping xenophobic violence in South Africa: Opportunities and pitfalls of hot-spot and causal analysis in combatting xenophobic violence presented by Dr Alexandra Hiropoulos (African Centre for Migration & Society, University of the Witwatersrand).  International migrants in South Africa have been remarkably vulnerable to socio-economic exclusion, corruption and violence since 1994 while public discourse continues to focus on the supposed negative impacts of migration. In the first half of 2017 alone, hundreds of non-nationals have been attacked, displaced and had their shops looted. While no official information on xenophobic violence is available by the South African Police Service or Statistics South Africa, the African Centre for Migration & Society has been tracking xenophobic threats and violence across the country through its platform, Xenowatch. Drawing from spatial data on 500 incidents of xenophobic violence between 1994 and 2017 as well Census 2011 and other data, this presentation will highlight maps of hotspot locations for xenophobic violence and discuss possible causal factors.  

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MIGRATION 2017: Migration Lives and Livelihoods in South Africa

MIGRATION 2017 is a three-week course held in partnership between the African Centre for Migration & Society (ACMS) at Wits University, South Africa and Carleton University, Canada

This course explored the various social, economic and political dynamics associated with migration in South Africa. As international debates, events and politics increasingly focus on issues surrounding immigration in Europe, North America, Australia and the Middle East, this course examined how they have played out and have mattered in various and contentious ways in South Africa; a key political and economic state in Africa, yet one that has had a strong tradition of seeing itself as an exception to the rest of the continent. From its colonial founding in the seventeenth century to the massive scale of labour migration from within southern Africa to the expanding South African mining and agricultural industries in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries, from the governing logics of its apartheid period (1948-1994) based on racialized and ethnicized population control to increased immigration from across Africa, xenophobic violence, and visceral debates around citizenship, jobs, and international relations in the post-apartheid period, migration has been a central component to the cultural politics of the economies, institutions, and politics of South Africa. This course explored some of these histories and their traces and contours in the lives, economic livelihoods and social geographies of contemporary South Africa, including the impact of African migration on national identity formation and the politics of belonging within South Africa, particularly in terms of South Africa as an African nation.

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Farm Labour Struggles in Zimbabwe: The Ground of Politics

Book Launch and Discussion

The African Centre for Migration & Society and Humanities Graduate Centre are pleased to host Professor Blair Rutherford (Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton University), in discussion with Duduzile Ndlovu (ACMS, University of the Witwatersrand), Edmore Chitukutuku (Department of Anthropology, University of the Witwatersrand) & Wellington Mvundura (Department of Sociology, University of the Witwatersrand) for a launch of his new book Farm Labour Struggles in Zimbabwe: The Ground of Politics. In the early twentieth-first century, white-owned farms in Zimbabwe were subject to large-scale occupations by black urban dwellers in an increasingly violent struggle between national electoral politics, land reform, and contestations over democracy. Were the black occupiers being freed from racist bondage as cheap laborers by the state-supported massive land redistribution, or were they victims of state violence who had been denied access to their homes, social services, and jobs? Blair Rutherford examines the unequal social and power relations shaping the lives, livelihoods, and struggles of some of the farm workers during this momentous period in Zimbabwean history.

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Making it work (or not): Gendered mobility and differential governance of artisanal gold mining in Sierra Leone and Mozambique

23 May 2017

As part of the Lunchtime Seminar Series, the African Centre for Migration & Society invites you to a seminar titled Making it work (or not): Gendered mobility and differential governance of artisanal gold mining in Sierra Leone and Mozambique presented by Professor Blair Rutherford (Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Carleton University). Over the last fifteen years, there has been increasing scholarly and policy attention on what is now commonly known as “artisanal and small-scale mining” (ASM) in sub-Saharan Africa, particularly with a focus on issues concerning governance, regulation, and economic returns. Drawing on ethnographic research in Tonkolili district, Sierra Leone, and Manica district, Mozambique over the last two years, this talk will examine how these processes of “formalization” intersect with the gendered movement and incorporation of labour in artisanal gold mining sites. 

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