Generation nationalism and generation asylum: Eritrean migrants, the global diaspora, and the transnational nation-state

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations

Abstract

This article examines two major groups of migrants from the Horn of Africa nation of Eritrea that I call "Generation Nationalism" and "Generation Asylum." Steeped in different historical and political contexts at home, ranging from the nationalist struggle for independence to the current climate of militarization and state repression, these generations are both distinct from each other and internally cleaved by political affiliation, region of origin, religion, class, and migration experiences en route. Situated across multiple diaspora locations, Eritreans are also interconnected by historically layered global networks. Applying Mannheim's ([1952] 1997) notion of political generations, and particularly Berg and Eckstein's adaptation of it to migrant popu-lations, I explore the distinctions between, and internal complexities of, Generation Nationalism and Generation Asylum as they relate to the changing Eritrean context and the transnational social field that binds them to one another and the homeland. I argue that Eritrean migrants of all political generations and groupings are simultaneously influenced by the interfaces among pre-migration and migration experiences and the transnational social field that connects them to one another and to the Eritrean nation-state through space and time, regardless of specific diaspora location.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)184-207
Number of pages24
JournalDiaspora
Volume18
Issue number1-2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 1 2009
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Eritrea
  • Human rights
  • Political agency
  • Refugees/asylum
  • Transnationalism

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Demography
  • Cultural Studies
  • History
  • Sociology and Political Science

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