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Migration, Resilience and Security: Responses to New Inflows of Asylum Seekers and Migrants

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Bourbeau, P 


The ubiquity of resilience—the process of patterned adjustments adopted by a society or an individual in the face of endogenous or exogenous shocks—across the broad social sciences spectrum is undisputable. Yet, migration scholars have been relatively absent from this vibrant discussion. The present article suggests a theorisation of the link between migration, resilience and security by examining ways in which resilience precedes a socially constructed understanding of international migration as a security issue. The article explores how the surge in worldwide refugee numbers and associated mass migration phenomena were not only interpreted as a shock in post-Cold War France, but also instrumentalised by dominant discourses to underscore the necessity of adopting a particular pattern of adjustments to uphold the status quo against changes provoked by these migratory events. The social construction of refugee movements and mass migration as a significant disturbance requiring France to opt for a resilient strategy has led, ultimately, to the securitisation of migration. In a broader sense, the article presents a new lens through which to analyse situations and conditions in which resilience has led to and induced the securitisation of migration.



Security, France, Politics, Resilience, Migration

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Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies

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Informa UK Limited