Sarah Kunz
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Entwined stories
Privileged family migration, differential inclusion and shifting geographies of belonging
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This chapter discusses the case of a family that emigrated from Germany in the 1990s and has lived in various countries since. It interrogates their migration trajectory and explores how their migration has been productive of social mobility in ways that are more often associated with less privileged migration. It further explores family members’ shifting modalities of belonging and narrations of identity, to shed light on experiences of contingent inclusion and contested belonging at the more privileged end of the migratory spectrum. In doing so, the chapter shows that we cannot equate exclusion with subjugation, and vice versa; instead, forms of partial in/exclusion, contingent status, and liminal belonging can result from privilege and enable its reproduction. The chapter further shows that migratory privilege needs to be analysed as an intersecting, relational and contextual construct, with significant in-group fissures and tensions. Finally, the chapter urges us to more systematically explore structurally related but disparate migrations within the same analytical framework, to advance our understanding of how inequality is produced, reproduced and sometimes contested in and through migration.

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