Pathways of Integration in northern Italy: Indian immigrants in Emilia Romagna

Monday 19 March 2018, 03:30am - 05:30pm
Location :Conference room, Institut Français en Inde Contact :This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
 

CSH 4th External Seminar

Monday, 19 March 2018 from  3:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m.

 At Institut Français en Inde, Conference room (ground floor)

2, Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam road, New Delhi 110011

Pathways of Integration in northern Italy: Indian immigrants in Emilia Romagna

by  

Meenakshi Thapan, 

Dpt. of Sociology, Delhi School of Economics 

Based on fieldwork among Indian dairy farmers in the Emilia Romagna region in northern Italy, this talk examines relationships between people and institutions as well as the efforts to build an integrated society based on individual and collective strategies of civic engagement.  Indian immigrants and their Italian hosts, and several others,  are engaged in the process of ‘integration’, and accomplish this through different kinds of activities within the legal framework of local municipalities and governments. There are no necessarily shared goals or sensibilities in place in this endeavour that in fact stays alive through a multiplicity of views and practices. An important finding is that, contrary to the popular perception, immigrants themselves are engaged in processes of becoming citizens, in a social and affective sense, and make an effort to seek out engagement and involvement with others in the public sphere. The themes of participatory citizenship and civic engagement bring in this element of an expanded understanding of both individual goals and a collective spirit. Whether or not ‘integration’ is achieved is another question and is not the focus of my study. The point is to examine the different pathways of integration as they emerge and evolve in everyday life in social contexts that are fragmented by dichotomies between political intent and economic necessity, between national laws and local policies, between the desire to open up the possibilities for interaction and integration and the will and commitment to follow this through at the governmental level and through the work of the people involved.

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