Theorizing state-diaspora relations in the Middle East: Authoritarian emigration states in comparative perspective

Tsourapas, G. (2020) Theorizing state-diaspora relations in the Middle East: Authoritarian emigration states in comparative perspective. Mediterranean Politics, 25(2), pp. 135-159. (doi: 10.1080/13629395.2018.1511299)

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Recent scholarly interest in the politics of migration and diaspora across the Global South has yet to address how authoritarian states attempt to reach out to populations abroad. In an effort to shift the discussion on state-diaspora relations beyond liberal democratic contexts and single-case studies, this article comparatively examines how authoritarian emigration states in the Middle East – Libya, Syria, Egypt, Turkey, and Jordan – behave towards their own citizens living beyond state borders. It identifies how each state develops multi-tier diaspora engagement policies aimed at three separate stages of citizens’ mobility: first, policies of exit regulate aspects related to emigration from the country of origin; second, overseas policies target citizens beyond the territorial boundaries of the nation state; finally, return policies set processes of readmission into the country of origin. In doing so, the article identifies similarities across disparate Middle East states’ engagement with emigration and diaspora policymaking. At the same time, the article paints a more complex picture of non-democracies’ strategies towards cross-border mobility that problematizes existing conceptualizations of authoritarian practices and state-diaspora relations.

Item Type:Articles
Additional Information:Funding: This work was supported by the British Academy [Grant No. SG163246] and the Council for British Research in the Levant [2017 Pilot Study Grant].
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Tsourapas, Professor Gerasimos
Authors: Tsourapas, G.
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Politics
Journal Name:Mediterranean Politics
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN (Online):1743-9418
Published Online:29 August 2020

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