The browser you are using is not supported by this website. All versions of Internet Explorer are no longer supported, either by us or Microsoft (read more here: https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/microsoft-365/windows/end-of-ie-support).

Please use a modern browser to fully experience our website, such as the newest versions of Edge, Chrome, Firefox or Safari etc.

Portrait of Simon Turner. Photo: Emma Lord.

Simon Turner

Professor

Portrait of Simon Turner. Photo: Emma Lord.

Postcolonial States and Migration

Author

  • Clayton Boeyink
  • Simon Turner

Summary, in English

This chapter overviews migration management across Africa, arguing with Vigneswaran and Quirk (2015) that postcolonial African states prevent, promote, and channel migration for myriad political and economic purposes. While breaking from Eurocentric bias obsessed with Africa to Europe migration, we balance the view of African states not as dysfunctional European prototypes, nor as incomparable and anomalous with the rest of the world. To understand postcolonial states and migration, however, it requires a look back at colonial practices of migration control, including pass laws, forced labour migration, and villagisation, to see the colonial continuities and changes. Drawing from foundational African Studies texts, we contend that postcolonial structures of migration were maintained by a dialectic interaction between the hegemonic system of indirect rule or ‘bifurcation’ outlined by Mahmood Mamdani and choices of ‘extraversion’ made by African elites to maintain wealth and power set out by Jean-François Bayart. To demonstrate these structures and ruptures, we highlight efforts of pan-African solidarity at independence and new pushes to intracontinental visa-free travel, which is contrasted with nationalising projects that hardened borders and saw the rise of encampment, xenophobia, and autochthony movements.

Department/s

  • Social Anthropology

Publishing year

2023

Language

English

Pages

38-51

Publication/Series

Routledge Handbook of Contemporary African Migration

Document type

Book chapter

Publisher

Taylor & Francis

Topic

  • Political Science

Status

Published

ISBN/ISSN/Other

  • ISBN: 9781000927597
  • ISBN: 9781003005551