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Social Anthropology: News


Ann-Christin Wagner wins Khayrallah Prize

Third year PhD student, Ann-Christin Wagner, awarded prize for best grad student paper.

Many congratulations to Ann, a third-year PhD student in International Development, whose paper "Displacing Displacement among Syrian Refugees in Mafraq, Jordan" has won her the Khayrallah Prize in Migration Studies best gaduate student award.

Based on fieldwork conducted in this out-of- the-way place in 2016, Wagner’s article makes an important contribution to a growing body of scholarly work dedicated to complicating representations of the Middle East as a disordered place of civil conflict and refugee camps, and situating forced displacement within longer histories of labor migration. This is a piece that unfolds in stages, revealing through a series of interwoven case studies the patterns and logics of movement that have shaped the choices of the Syrians who have settled in Mafraq in recent years. Many, Wagner finds, have moved before, working as itinerant laborers in Jordan or finding work as agricultural laborers within Syria. Displacement, then, is nothing new to them, and they have brought the logic of labor migration to their new lives as refugees – using aid, for instance, to provide remittances to relatives still in Syria. Written in elegant, measured prose, the article is as sensitive to the personal deliberations and experiences of individual migrants and refugees as it is to their structural circumstances, and the way in which war has created new restrictions and inequalities, allowing some to profit while also forcing many to become immobile and to stay put where they once
would have moved back and forth.

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