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Title: Long-term diasporic return migration in post-Soviet Armenia : balancing mobility and sedentarism
Author: Karageozian, Nanor
ISNI:       0000 0004 6346 4312
Awarding Body: University of Oxford
Current Institution: University of Oxford
Date of Award: 2015
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This thesis examines the immigration to and long-term settlement in post-Soviet Armenia of Armenians from well-established diasporic communities - mostly from Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Iraq, Canada, and the United States. It argues that diverse levels and combinations of anchoring and floating co-exist in the diasporan returnees' return motivations, post-return integration experiences, and identity and belonging (re)conceptualization processes. They are manifested in the returnees' habitual dispositions, imaginative aspirations, and practical considerations, which develop within a particular sociohistorical environment. The study also considers the changes that occur over time in the structural context and in the ways returnees engage with it. It demonstrates that the inclination of returnees toward more rooted or more mobile directions depends, to a large extent, on their diasporic community background, the generation they belong to, and more immediate factors related to their life-cycle stages. Throughout the analysis, the important role of emotions in the return visions and experiences is highlighted. The thesis makes an empirical contribution by studying the largely uncharted case of Armenian diasporic return in the post-Soviet era. At a more theoretical level, it promotes a balanced approach that goes beyond the overemphasis on mobility and the relative neglect of sedentarism that have characterized many works in the fields of diaspora and migration studies over the past few decades. Underlying this balanced path is the goal of recognizing the equal importance of and complex inter-relationship between human agency and objective structures. To this end, the thesis relies on a theoretical framework based primarily on some of Pierre Bourdieu's key conceptual tools, with certain modifications. Thus, the study frames the topic of long-term diasporic return migration within broader social theory. This way, not only does it link diasporic return to paradigms in migration and diaspora studies, but it also views it from a wider angle of social action.
Supervisor: Chatty, Dawn ; Bakewell, Oliver Sponsor: Calouste Gulbenkian Foundation ; Luys Foundation ; Lincoln College (University of Oxford) ; Open Society Foundations ; Oxford Department of International Development
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: Return migration--Armenia ; Armenians--Ethnic identity ; Armenia--Emigration and immigration ; Armenia--Economic conditions--1991-