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The Cautious Politics of “Humanizing” Refugee Research

Darling, Jonathan (2021) 'The Cautious Politics of “Humanizing” Refugee Research.', Refuge: Canada's Journal on Refugees, 37 (2). pp. 56-62.


In this intervention, I reflect on what it may mean to ‘humanize’ refugee research. The assumption often made is that ‘humanizing’ can arise through a concern with the particularity of the individual, through drawing from ‘the mass’ the narrative of the singular and employing this as a means to identify, , and potentially understand others. Yet such a move risks a reliance on creating relations of empathy and compassion that elide political responses to dehumanization and often relies on a assumption of what constitutes the category of “the human,” an assumption that has been critically challenged by post-colonial writing.

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Publisher statement:Copyright (c) 2021 Jonathan Darling This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License. Refuge authors retain the copyright over their work, and license it to the general public under the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial License International (CC BY-NC 4.0). This license allows for non-commercial use, reproduction and adaption of the material in any medium or format, with proper attribution. For general information on Creative Commons licences, visit the Creative Commons site. For the CC BY-NC 4.0 license, review the human readable summary.
Date accepted:No date available
Date deposited:31 January 2022
Date of first online publication:22 November 2021
Date first made open access:31 January 2022

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