Women and migration

19 June 2017

Seminar: Dr. Ladan Rahbari – ‘Female Migrants in Belgium and Campaigns of Solidarity with Muslim Women’

Time:   12:00-13:45

Venue: Rozier 44/Plateaustraat 22, room 100.038 (CRCG meeting room, next to Aud.O)

Social activists and feminists in the West have shown their solidarity with Muslim women in different ways. This research is based on life stories of Iranian female migrants currently residing in Belgium, and explores their perceptions of Western campaigns of solidarity with Muslim women. The lecture will address how women’s understanding of the two contexts’ differences is not based on binary East-West categorization but a far more complex differentiation of cultural, moral and political possibilities and limitations. The research depicts an exploratory image of the life of the respondents in contemporary Europe and the relations between their intersectional identifications and their perceptions of their body and bodily practices.

Dr. Ladan Rahbari is a social anthropologist; she has a PhD in Sociology (University of Mazandaran), a Master’s degree in Anthropology (Tehran University) and a Bachelor’s degree in Italian Literature (Tehran University). She is now conducting a joint doctoral research project in Ghent University and Vrije Universiteit Brussel. This research project ‘A Critical Analysis of Cross-Cultural Discourses and Moral Understandings of Gender, Sexuality and Embodiment’ (2015-2019) is funded by Research Foundation Flanders (FWO). Rahbari has teaching experience in various BA and MA programs of anthropology, art studies and social sciences in several universities. Her research interests include gender politics, sexuality, space, body and harmful cultural practices with a general focus on the Middle East and migrant populations, and in the frameworks of radical and postcolonial feminist theories. She is currently affiliated with the Centre for Research on Culture and Gender (CRCG, UGent) and Centre of Expertise on Gender, Diversity and Intersectionality (RHEA, VUB).

Register by sending an email to Ladan.Rahbari@UGent.be

Public Lecture: Dr. Eglė Kačkutė – ‘Language(s) of Mothering in Migration: Silent, Monolingual and Multilingual Mothers’

Time:   14:00-16:00

Venue: Rozier 44/Plateaustraat 22, Aud.O

Fictional narratives of mothering in a foreign environment allow for some classification of mothers according to their linguistic preferences in relation to their children. Portrayals of silent mothers are representations of migrant mothers who, despite being fluent in their native tongue, the language of the host country and sometimes both, would not speak their own mother tongue to their children. Monolingual mothers insist on speaking exclusively their own native tongue to the children despite the fact they do not always answer in that language. Multilingual mothers balance between several languages of mothering. The lecture will seek answers to the following questions: How and why mothers choose one or another linguistic practice over others and how that affects their mothering experience and maternal subjectivity?

Dr. Eglė Kačkutė is an Irish Research Council Post-doctoral Research Fellow at Maynooth University (Ireland). Her project is entitled ‘Motherhood and Migration: Between Languages, Cultures and Identities‘. She received her PhD from Vilnius University in 2011. Her dissertation which focussed on identity in contemporary British and French women’s writing was the finalist of the Best PhD Awards Lithuania in 2011. It was published in Lithuanian as Svetimos ir Savos (Strange and Familiar Selves) in 2012. Her current research examines what it means to mother in a culturally and linguistically foreign environment through literary narratives written from the perspective of migrant, that is to say, exiled, refugee, and exaptriate mothers.

This lecture is hosted by the Centre for Research on Culture and Gender (Ghent University) and is co-organized by the Lithuanian Culture Centre in Belgium, the Migration Working Group (Ghent University), and the Centre for the Social Study of Migration and Refugees (Ghent University). Coordinator: Dr. Katrien De Graeve.

Register by sending an email to Katrien.DeGraeve@UGent.be