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16th November, 2022

Gendered Return Mobilities to Afghanistan from 2001 to 2021


Event Details

16th November, 2022
14:00 - 15:30

Global economic restructuring, conflict and climate change triggered unprecedented internal and cross-border mobility of men and women. While there has been an assumption in media and political discourses that migrants and refugees intend to stay in the countries to which they go, recent years have seen increasing transnational mobilities and return migration because of the rapid development of transport and communication technologies, the relative improvement of political and economic situations in migrants’ homeland, as well as anti-migrant and refugee hostility and the exclusion of incoming people from the labour market in receiving countries (Keles 2019).

Moreover, displaced people from the neighbouring countries are also returning to their conflict-fragile country of origin for various reasons. In addition, the second generation of migrants become a part of return mobilities for a sense of belonging to their ethnic, cultural and parental roots. In this context, the phenomenon of ‘return’ mobilities, particularly gendered return mobilities, is not only a component of the sociology of migration, gender studies and international law but is also an emerging issue of economic and political importance in many conflicted and post-conflict countries and regions for those who would seek to understand and develop policy and programme responses.

Drawing on research conducted in Afghanistan in 2021 before the collapse of the elected Afghan government and seizure of power by the Taliban, this presentation will focus on the gendered return mobilities to Afghanistan from 2001 and 2021, including their motivations for return, employment, education, economic and political activities as well as experiences of gendered return migration.

About the speaker
Dr Janroj Yilmaz Keles is Senior Research Fellow in Politics at Middlesex University Business and Law School, researching on peace and conflict, gender, political violence, migration, (digital) social movements, and political communication. Keles has extensive experience of international education. He studied in Turkey, German and United Kingdom and received his PhD in Sociology and Communications from Brunel University, London.

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