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CEFREPA Lectures - Migrant Dreams : Egyptian Workers in the Gulf States (Online)

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Tuesday, 18 January 2022. 6:00 PM, Kuwait (GMT +3:00)
This lecture will take place via Zoom, in English.

In his recent book Migrant Dreams (2020), Samuli Schielke takes up the intimate connection between economic, moral, and imaginative aspects of the migrant experience. He follows the trajectories of Egyptian men who migrated to Qatar as contract workers and returned to Egypt to build a married life, but soon had to begin looking for a next opportunity abroad to provide for their families. Migration for work abroad, the book argues, is driven by different kinds of dreams, some of which are conventional and compelling to the degree of being inevitable to pursue ; while some are unlikely and unexpected, exceeding the scope of social reproduction. Relations of production are thus also relations of imagination, one reproducing the other - and yet often in an altered shape, causing social transformations that cannot be understood in terms of either tradition or progress. In his presentation of the book, Schielke also connects themes of the book with his new research on the dream of stability between long-term precarious lives in migrancy, and the striving to live in the moral and material comfort of a family home.

Dr. Samuli Schielke is a social and cultural anthropologist writing about contemporary Egypt and the Gulf region. He is a senior research fellow at Leibniz-Zentrum Moderner Orient (ZMO), and associate primary investigator at Berlin Graduate School Muslim Cultures and Societies. He is author and editor of The Perils of Joy (2012), The Global Horizon (with Knut Graw, 2012), Ordinary Lives and Grand Schemes (with Liza Debevec, 2012), In Search of Europe ? (with Daniela Swarowsky and Andrea Heister), Egypt in the Future Tense (2015), Migrant Dreams (2020), and Shared Margins (2021), and co-director of the films Messages from Paradise #1 (with Daniela Swarowsky, 2009) and The Secret Capital (2013, with Mukhtar Shehata).

Dr. Marion Breteau is an anthropologist, associate researcher at CEFREPA and Assistant Professor at the American University of Kuwait. Her research interests focus on the Sultanate of Oman, including the social construction of emotions and intimacy ; young adult lifestyles, foreign domestic work in Oman ; gender studies, couple formation, and kinship ; anthropology of space in the Gulf ; and online practices. Marion Breteau is currently co-directing the next issue of Arabian Humanities CEFREPA journal, titled "Oman Over Times, a nation from the Nahda to the Oman Vision 2040".

To register : https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_9FDUFuQRTJ66k3S6AYATPw