Laboring for integration: Integration practitioners, intercultural encounters and misjudged temporalities in Berlin

Research output: Contribution to conferencePaperCommunication

Abstract

Over the past fifteen years the district of Berlin-Marzahn became home to the largest concentration of post-Soviet migrants of German ancestry in the former East Germany. Drawing on my research in the district, including two of its integration projects for middle-aged, unemployed migrants, I examine these projects’ failed attempts to create spaces of encounter between the migrants and district’s long-term residents. In this presentation I focus specifically on the structural position of integration work (Integrationsarbeit) that creates first and foremost conditions of possibility for its proposed goals. I highlight the precarious nature of employment in the projects, reflecting not only a broader neoliberalization of governance, but also a serious misrecognition of the exacting nature of the emotional, psychological and intellectual labor involved in this type of social work. Critiquing temporal imaginaries underpinning the ideas of integration through encounter, as well as integration more broadly, I argue for reflexivity-centric public reformulations of both integration and encounter.
Original languageEnglish
Publication date2015
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventAnalysing the practises of (organised) cultural encounters: International Research Seminar - Roskilde University, Roskilde, Denmark
Duration: 4 Nov 20155 Nov 2015
https://www.ruc.dk/om-universitetet/kalender/vis/article/research-seminar-analysing-the-practices-of-organised-cultural-encounters/back/roskilde-universitet/ (Link to Seminar)

Seminar

SeminarAnalysing the practises of (organised) cultural encounters
LocationRoskilde University
CountryDenmark
CityRoskilde
Period04/11/201505/11/2015
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