WISER Lunchtime Discussion : South Africa/Ukraine-Thinking migration crises across both contexts | 5 April | 1-2pm

Tuesday, 5 April, 2022 - 13:00

South Africa/Ukraine

Thinking migration crises across both contexts

If the very early post-apartheid years were arguably distinguished by a relative openness to cross-border and continental migration, relating to long histories of regional migration and political solidarity, that political culture is visibly collapsing today. 

Political parties like the Patriotic Alliance and ActionSA have leveraged policies explicitly targeting immigrants and these postures have begun to find their way into the established political parties and government institutions.  Attacks on immigrant refugees, workers and their families have been growing in scope and potency. New forms of politics, mobilising anxieties and fears in a time of economic crisis, are sweeping across the country. Both the state and populists turn against Zimbabweans (in particular) to exculpate the many economic and institutional failures of the last decade.

As many critics charge Europeans with racist hypocrisy in the contrasts between the reception of Ukrainian refugees, and the systematic policing of migration from similar war zones like Afghanistan, Eritrea, Mali, Syria and Yemen, we ask what ethical and political frameworks should shape our own responses to migrants and refugees in the face of what begins to look like South Africa’s own Brexit moment.

This will be an open lunchtime discussion hosted by WISER to discuss collectively matters on all of our minds right now.

Tuesday, 5th April 2022  1-2pm
WiSER Seminar Room