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Title: Persistently temporary : ambiguity and political mobilisations in Italy's Roma camps : a comparative perspective
Author: Maestri, Gaja Daniela Melissa
ISNI:       0000 0004 5990 0863
Awarding Body: Durham University
Current Institution: Durham University
Date of Award: 2016
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This thesis interrogates the temporal persistence of Roma camps to understand the mechanisms that lead to the protraction of their temporary condition. While persistent temporariness has been widely acknowledged as a common aspect of camp-like institutions, it has rarely been problematised. Examining the cases of Italy and France, this thesis unpacks this notion of persistent temporariness and investigates the factors contributing to its different forms. In so doing, the thesis re-thinks the concept of persistence as gradual change and offers a new theorisation of the camp as a site of contentious governance. The three empirical questions examined in the thesis are: 1) What are the factors that contribute to the persistence of the Italian Roma camps? 2) Can these factors also help with understanding of other cases of persistent temporariness? 3) What are the strategies developed to oppose the persistence of the Roma camps? These are addressed by way of a comparison of three institutional camps characterised by different types of enduring temporariness: today's Italian Roma camps, the historical French transit estates for Algerian migrants, and contemporary French integration villages for Roma migrants. Following an analysis of the Italian Roma camps, the thesis presents what I call an ‘asymmetrical comparison’ with the French cases, which aims to investigate how the factors implicated in the persistent temporariness of the Roma camps can help to explain the persistence of the transit estates and integration villages. In examining these cases, I have drawn attention to the concept of policy ambiguity and to the way it influences the strategies of the actors involved in the camp governance and, therefore, their different trajectories of persistent temporariness. Although, in Italy, ambiguity facilitated the persistence of the Roma camps, in recent years a new form of resistance has turned policy ambiguity into an opportunity for political mobilisation.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available