Project Details
Funding Scheme : General Research Fund
Project Number : 18601921
Project Title(English) : Spaces of Precarity: Migration, Spatiality and the Refugee Graphic Narrative 
Project Title(Chinese) : 不穩定的空間:移民、空間性和難民圖像小說 
Principal Investigator(English) : Dr Banerjee, Bidisha 
Principal Investigator(Chinese) :  
Department : Department of Literature and Cultural Studies
Institution : The Education University of Hong Kong
Co - Investigator(s) :
Dr Arnold, Markus
Panel : Humanities, Social Sciences
Subject Area : Humanities and Arts
Exercise Year : 2021 / 22
Fund Approved : 249,209
Project Status : On-going
Completion Date : 31-12-2024
Abstract as per original application
The refugee crisis of the 21st century is one of the most challenging the globe has faced; today more than an estimated 68 million people are displaced from their homes. Postcolonial and diaspora studies have been slow to respond to the need to reconceptualize theories of migration in the context of the new age of migration. The traditional articulations of diasporic identity formation are lacking in theorizing refugee identities characterized by statelessness, violence and precarity. The kinds of transnational affiliations that foster diasporic identity formations are often absent in the case of refugees on the move as are the engendering of hybrid and cosmopolitan identities so celebrated in diaspora studies. Scholars like David Farrier (2011) and Agnes Woolley (2014) have called for diaspora studies to engage with questions of asylum and the “refugee crisis” of our time that has brought to the fore debates about national sovereignty, migration and border control. They underscore the importance of “envisioning new ways of belonging” (Woolley 2014, 9) for refugees. We wish to address this lacuna in diaspora studies by drawing attention to the spatialities of refugee migration as delineated in several refugee graphic narratives. The last decade has seen the publication of a number of Anglophone and Francophone graphic narratives often characterized as refugee graphic narratives, grappling as they do with the urgent questions raised by the refugee crisis. “Spaces of Precarity” considers the liminal and transitory spaces of migration spaces like refugee camps, borders and detention centres as well as the open seas often depicted in refugee graphic narratives. Following critics like Simon Gikandi (2010) and Giorgio Agamben (1998, 2000) who have theorized the refugee as a new kind of Other that challenges global cultural flows, this project argues that the depiction of these spaces in graphic literature, offers us new opportunities to theorize migration and diaspora based on reconfiguring spatiality. In doing so, this study brings together refugee studies, migration and diaspora studies as well as the study of graphic narratives. The project also considers the specific formal, narrative, and aesthetic features of graphic narratives including the spatiality of the graphic narrative’s page in an attempt to explore the ways in which the graphic form may be particularly suited to depicting the plight of refugees. At the same time, critical scrutiny of these features will also interrogate potential scenographical limits of the medium in representing the range of refugee experiences "appropriately."
21 世紀的難民危機為全球所面臨的其中一個最具挑戰性的危機。迄今,估計有超過 6800 萬人流離失所。在新移民時代移民的框架下,後殖民和離散研究對重新定義移民理論的需求反應遲疑。事實上,傳統的論述對離散身份建構,特別是難民獨有的無國籍、暴力和不穩定的特徵缺乏理論化的探討。「不穩定的空間」這項研究計劃希望透過關注難民圖像敘述所描繪的難民遷移的空間性,來填補離散研究中的漏洞。為了達到研究的目的,本計劃將透過探討移民的閾限和過渡空間,例如難民營、邊境和拘留中心,以及關於難民的圖像敘述中經常描繪的公海,來說明視覺文學對這些空間的描述,特別是根據空間性重新配置的論述,為我們提供了理論化遷移和離散的機會。
Research Outcome
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