The current focus on refugees, and the familiar claim that we are experiencing a “refugee crisis” is clearly a response to geo-political events. But it is also a moment in our discursive history. As such, the present situation calls for a historicization of the major terms and concepts of our political debate.
In working out the intertwined cultural histories of refugees, citizenship, and the nation, perhaps with Homi K. Bhabha we can imagine new forms of belonging that do not posit the refugee as an enemy. The seventh annual Dean Hopper Conference of Fall 2019 (20-21st September) will examine these and related questions, placing the current “refugee crisis” in cultural, historical and political context.
Professor Judith Surkis, Rutgers University
Professor Jonathan Golden, Drew University
Frank Nardi, Doctoral Candidate, Drew University