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Journal articles

Taking place : Sri-Lankan refugees in South India

Abstract : Refugeeness is defined not only by displacement, whether of individuals or of groups, but also by complex everyday social practices, aimed at building up social relations, developing networks and redefining identities. In this sense, refugeeness amounts to taking place and occupying space. Based on a detailed ethnography of Keezhputhupattu refugee camp, located just a few kilometres away from Pondicherry, this study will analyse the ways Sri Lankan refugees confront and invest the various spaces they occupy. This will enable us to rethink the classic vision of refugee camps as spaces of exception offered by Agamben, as well as to reflect on the socio-spatial effects of a triple dynamic of displacement, emplacement and replacement. Poor living conditions, inadequate dole, and restriction of movement made camp life unbearable for the refugees. Nevertheless, this threefold dynamic reveals ordinary acts of resistance, as well as the agency of the refugees that make it possible to transgress daily hegemonies and allows us to think about their belonging to the city, i.e. their urbanity, in the best possible way.
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Submitted on : Thursday, December 16, 2021 - 3:16:34 PM
Last modification on : Saturday, June 25, 2022 - 10:44:30 AM
Long-term archiving on: : Thursday, March 17, 2022 - 7:18:49 PM


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Distributed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


  • HAL Id : hal-03225270, version 1


Anthony Goreau-Ponceaud, Anne-Sophie Bentz. Taking place : Sri-Lankan refugees in South India. Territoire en mouvement.Revue de Géographie et d'Aménagement, Université des Sciences et Technologies de Lille, 2020. ⟨hal-03225270⟩



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