"Mothering Practices in Times of Legal Precarity"

Workshops, conferences 2020

  • Date: Nov 30, 2020
  • Location: Zoom Meeting
"Mothering Practices in Times of Legal Precarity"
A webinar organised by the Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity.

For more details please contact motheringinprecarity@gmail.com(at)mmg.mpg.de.

Artwork: Michael Adonai - Vicious Circle

A growing number of pregnant women, mothers and their children are amongst the people who often irregularly cross sea and land borders to seek asylum. This Webinar focuses on migrant women and their life worlds as they engage in mothering practices while living with a precarious legal status. It explores the ways in which intersecting oppressions impact on mothers who experience asylum and border regimes. Juggling legal precarity is draining, deeply informs the everyday life and challenges the preservation of emotional intimacy to children from whom mothers are physically separated. Similarly, structural and institutional barriers in the receiving country impact on and often complicate women's mothering practices vis-à-vis their accompanying children. At the same time, however, women may find in the relationship to their children a zone of comfort and meaning in a hostile, challenging environment. Women often became mothers before their arrival to the receiving country. Consequently, mothering shapes and is an inherent part of their memories of having lived in other countries and contexts and of having fled. This Webinar starts from the premise that when applying the lens of motherhood to the study of forced migration, we get a different perspective on women's decisions and strategies, learning how their forced migration reconfigures their kin ties, senses of personhood, intimacies, and belonging.

Confirmed presenters:

  1. Soukaina Chakkour, Leiden University: “Mothering in the space of hesitation: the case of Egyptian Mothers in Paris”
  2. Dr Sophia Balakian, George Mason University: “Of mothers, aunts, and neighbors: nuclear family hegemony and mothering other children in legal precarity”
  3. Laura Katharina Preissler, University of Luzern: “Mothering sans papiers – Seeking anetal and postpartum care without residence permit in Switzerland”
  4. Lucy Hunt, University of Oxford: “Guiding, shaping and resisting: refugee mothers' educational strategies as they navigate 'unsettlement'”
  5. Kimberly Sigmund, University of Amsterdam: “Preocupación, precarity and motherhood among Central American asylum-seekers in Los Angeles, USA”
  6. Laura Shobiye, Cardiff University: “The role of learning in displaced motherhood”
  7. Dr Elisa Lanari, MPI for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity: “ 'Always keep your gaze high:' Latina m(other)work in suburban Atlanta”
  8. Laurie Lijnders, SOAS, University of London: “Family separation as a strategy for togetherness: Eritrean women’s creative migration strategies from Israel to the UK”
  9. Dr Magdalena Suerbaum, MPI for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity: “In search of legal stability, predicaments of asylum-seeking mothers in Germany”

The Webinar will take place via zoom. Those interested in attending the webinar should contact Laurie Lijnders and
Dr Magdalena Suerbaum at: motheringinprecarity@gmail.com.

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