Download Citizens Abroad: Emigration and the State in the Middle East by Laurie A. Brand PDF

By Laurie A. Brand

Although the vast majority of emigration this present day originates within the worldwide south, such a lot learn has all in favour of the receiving states of Europe and North the US, whereas little or no recognition has been paid to the rules of the sending states towards emigration or towards their nationals out of the country. Taking the rustic instances of Morocco, Tunisia, Lebanon and Jordan, this paintings explores the connection among the govt. of the sending states, the outmovement in their voters and the groups of expatriates that experience built. by means of targeting the evolution of presidency associations charged with numerous facets of expatriate affairs, this paintings breaks new floor in figuring out the altering nature of the connection among expatriates and their domestic kingdom. faraway from suggesting that the nation is waning in significance, the conclusions point out that this dating presents proof either one of nation resilience and of recent tendencies within the perform of sovereignty.

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Extra resources for Citizens Abroad: Emigration and the State in the Middle East and North Africa

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Lebanon’s communities abroad have been, since the days of the French Mandate (1921–46), an integral part of the numerical calculus that produced and has maintained the country’s political system, generally referred to as ‘‘confessional,’’ meaning that representation is based on religio-ethnic affiliation. Lebanon has also enjoyed a more open political system over the years than any other Arab country, but it was in part that openness that paved the way for its fifteenyear civil war. The presence of literally millions of Lebanese (and their descendants) abroad has continued to shape and be shaped by politics in the homeland, with the 1975–90 conflict only the most tragic and obvious example.

Movement toward more open or participatory political systems after years of authoritarianism may render the expatriates potential sources 38 For a thorough discussion of the many facets of the remittance issue, see Luis Eduardo Guarnizo, ‘‘The Economics of Transnational Living,’’ International Migration Review 37 (3) Fall 2003: pp. 666–99. 18 Citizens Abroad of support (political and financial) for new or ascendant political forces. In such cases one may expect the new regime/government to introduce institutions or programs to harness this power.

These considerations are all related to the moral (and perhaps the customary) bases of state authority. A second explanation is related to history. Particularly where there has been regime change or transformation of the political system, the government may seek, in effect, to right the wrongs of the past. In other cases, where economic circumstances triggered the emigration, leaderships may feel a certain responsibility for not having been able to create jobs at home during an earlier period. In either case, reaching out to those who left may be a way of rehabilitating the state image both domestically and abroad, and of laying the bases for a new state–society relationship in the future.

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