Today, youth migration is becoming an increasingly important phenomenon in the field of transnational migration studies. Yet, migration scholarship and immigration law continue to presume that migrants are first and foremost adult actors making relatively autonomous consensual decisions to become mobile. When youth migration is discussed, it is often normatively assumed that parental neglect or a breakdown in parental care are the cause. Adults are frequently seen as the primary decision-makers and providers for children and, thus, are often responsible—or culpable—for a young person’s migration. The corresponding position of the child as inferior or somehow exclusively dependent on parents stands in marked contrast to the integral roles children often assume in familial decision-making processes, as well as to the decisions they make as social actors and migrants in their own right.
This interdisciplinary conference seeks to disrupt the adult bias in migration literature by uniting emerging and established scholars and practitioners to investigate both the conceptual and territorial migration of children and youth across diverse international contexts. Hosted by the African Centre for Migration and Society (ACMS) at the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, South Africa, and co-sponsored by the Migration and Health Project (maHp) and the American Anthropological Association’s Anthropology of Children and Youth Interest Group (ACYIG), this conference promises to engage a wide field of debate and produce some new ways of moving forward with the research agenda on youth migration.
Please RSVP here by 30 March