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Being a desirable migrant: perception and racialisation of Icelandic migrants in Norway

Being a desirable migrant: perception and racialisation of Icelandic migrants in Norway


Titill: Being a desirable migrant: perception and racialisation of Icelandic migrants in Norway
Höfundur: Guðjónsdóttir, Guðbjört   orcid.org/0000-0002-7126-3452
Loftsdóttir, Kristín   orcid.org/0000-0003-3491-724X
Útgáfa: 2016-06-23
Tungumál: Enska
Umfang: 791-808
Háskóli/Stofnun: Háskóli Íslands
University of Iceland
Svið: Félagsvísindasvið (HÍ)
School of Social Sciences (UI)
Deild: Félags- og mannvísindadeild (HÍ)
Faculty of Social and Human Sciences (UI)
Birtist í: Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies;43(5)
ISSN: 1369-183X
1469-9451 (eISSN)
DOI: 10.1080/1369183X.2016.1199268
Efnisorð: Anthropology; Migration studies; Economic migrants; Racialisation; Class; Migrant desirability; Norway; Mannfræði; Fólksflutningar (félagsfræði); Innflytjendur; Noregur; Bankahrunið 2008; Lífskjör
URI: https://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11815/582

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Tilvitnun:

Guðjónsdóttir, G., & Loftsdóttir, K. (2017). Being a desirable migrant: perception and racialisation of Icelandic migrants in Norway. Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, 43(5), 791-808. doi:10.1080/1369183X.2016.1199268

Útdráttur:

In the aftermath of the financial crisis that hit Iceland in October 2008, increased numbers of Icelanders migrated to Norway to seek employment due to difficult economic circumstances in Iceland. Using critical perspectives from postcolonial studies and critical whiteness studies, the paper explores how these Icelandic migrants in Norway make sense of their new position as economic migrants within a global economy characterised by a growing sense of precariousness, while past inequalities and racism continue to matter. We also examine how these migrants are perceived in Norwegian media, and how social discourses of Icelandic migrants reflect larger Norwegian debates on racism, desirability and cultural belonging. Media discourses in Norway and interviews with Icelandic migrants reveal a hierarchy of acceptability of migrants. Icelanders are positioned as highly desirable compared to other migrant groups due to the intersection of perceived racial belonging, nationality and class. Our discussion contributes, furthermore, towards a critical analysis of the category migrant, by exploring how the term immigrant (innvandrer/innflytjandi) is used in narratives of Icelandic migrants in Norway and in Norwegian media discussions, showing the negative and racialised connotations of the term immigrant and how its understanding is linked with vulnerable positions and discrimination.

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