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Title: Belonging beyond nationhood : the everyday experiences of Filipino migrant workers in Israel
Author: Jackson, Vivienne
ISNI:       0000 0004 2739 5292
Awarding Body: University of Bristol
Current Institution: University of Bristol
Date of Award: 2011
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My thesis examines how belonging (and not-belonging) is expressed amongst Filipino migrant workers resident in Israel: an ethno-national settler state with no general mechanisms for non-Jewish migrant naturalisation and incorporation. While nationhood and ethnicity have been exaggerated in past social research with migrants, I question proposals to expunge them entirely in favour of the study of other migrant identities linked primarily to public life. Instead, I aim to document and understand the emergence of varied forms of belonging, national and otherwise, in the analysis of 52 narrative interviews and other everyday events with Filipino participants. I employ the intersectional heuristic of "translocational positionality" (Anthias 2002, 2006, 2007, 2008), in doing so adopting a distinctive methodology to avoid the analytic privileging of anyone category of social analysis. This methodology ensures that migrants who are not organizationally involved are included in the sample, and limits recruitment from any single source. Secondly, categories of relevance to belonging are not pre-determined but are allowed to arise in interviews. I find that politicised nationhood and ethnicity are relatively rare referents for narrative positionalities amongst participants in this study. The Israeli-Philippine migration context generally downplays the revision and reinforcement of political Filipino nationalist or ethnic sentiment. Yet, other positionalities of belonging (and not-belonging) arise for particular people. These express specific kinds of national, class, gendered and religious themes that are complex, co-existent and overlapping. These motifs contextually inflect and are inflected by one another. Such positionalities are regularly linked to factors located in everyday life in Israel to which participants may give particular weight in the context of structural biographies, despite exclusion from and mistreatment in other Israeli social domains. Positionalities are often contradictory both within individual narratives and across them as a whole. The thesis concludes that to address the over-ethnicisation of migrant lives in social research requires moving away from the study of narrow identities and to recognise that no forms of belonging can be privileged or ruled out in advance of analysis
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available