Friday, November 02, 2007

Migration and Borders Syllabus

ICP 329.5
3 credits
International and Comparative Politics
American University of Central Asia
Spring Semester 2008
J. Otto Pohl, Ph.D.

Meeting Time: Tuesday and Thursday 11:00 am

Course Description: This course will cover the topic of cross border migration. It will concentrate primarily upon the movement of people across international borders. However, it will also briefly cover the role of internal state borders with regards to forced migration in the USSR during the 1940s. The class will deal with various types of international migration in the 20th and 21st centuries including labor migration, forced migration and ethnic “return” migration. The course will emphasize the effects of state policies upon migrants in both countries of emigration and immigration. Case studies will be drawn from the US-Mexican border, Europe, the USSR and its successor states, and Palestine.

Requirements: The course will consist of assigned readings, lectures, discussion, short writing assignments, an oral report and a research paper. For each of the twelve weeks with reading assignments, students will be required to submit a 150 to 200 word summary of the material along with one question for class discussion. Students will also have to complete a 2500 to 3000 word research paper comparing and contrasting two case studies of migration. The paper is due the last week of class. In the two weeks prior to this deadline each student will be required to give a short oral presentation on the subject of their paper followed by a short question and answer session. Late papers will lose one letter grade for each day they are late. Students must come to class on time. Being more than fifteen minutes late will count as an absence. Students will lose one letter grade after four unexcused absences and fail the course after seven. Written proof of an emergency from a doctor or other appropriate authority is required for an absence to be excused. Please turn off all cell phones while in class. I will eject any students carrying on cell phone conversations during class from the room. This will count as an unexcused absence. Finally, I have a significant hearing loss and may have to ask people to repeat their questions or statements from time to time. You can minimize this by speaking loudly and clearly. This syllabus is tentative and subject to change.

Plagiarism Policy: Plagiarism will result in a zero on the assignment for the first offense. A second offense will result in a grade of F for the course. Please be sure to cite your sources.


Twelve short papers – 36% (3% each)

Written research paper – 20% (Due last week of class)

Oral report on research – 10%

Class participation – 34%

Class Schedule

Week one: Introduction and review of the syllabus.

Crossing the Border

Week Two: Read “Border Crossings and the Transformation of Value and Valuers” (chapter six) in Hasting Donnan and Thomas M. Wilson, Borders: Frontiers of Identity, Nation and State (Oxford, UK: Berg, 1999), pp. 107-127.

Week Three: Read “Frontiers and Migration” (chapter five) in Malcolm Anderson, Frontiers: Territory and State Formation in the Modern World (Cambridge, UK: Blackwell Publishers, 1996), pp. 127-150.

Labor Migration

Week Four: Read Thomas J. Espenshade, “Unauthorized Immigration to the United States,” Annual Review of Sociology, Vol. 21 (1995), pp. 195-216.

Week Five: Read “Europe’s Immigrant Integration Crises” (chapter one) in Patrick Ireland, Becoming Europe: Immigration, Integration and the Welfare State (Pittsburgh, PA: University of Pittsburgh Press, 2004), pp. 1-26.

Ethnic Cleansing

Week Six: Read “Forced Migrations: Prehistory and Classification” (chapter two) in Pavel Polian, Against Their Will: The History and Geography of Forced Migrations in the USSR (Budapest: Central European University Press, 2004), pp. 17-48.

Week Seven: Read Elza-Bair Guchinova, “Deportation of the Kalmyks (1943-1956): Stigmatized Ethnicity” (chapter seven) in Uyama Tomohiko, ed., Empire, Islam, and Politics in Central Eurasia, Slavic Eurasian Studies, no. 14 (Sapporo, Japan: Slavic Research Center, Hokkaido University, 2007), pp. 187-221.

Week Eight: Read Introduction and Piotr Pykel, “The Expulsion of the Germans from Czechoslovakia” (chapter one) in Steffen Prausser and Arfon Rees, eds., The Expulsion of the ‘German’ Communities from Eastern Europe at the End of the Second World War (Florence, Italy: European University Institute, 2004), pp. 1-20.

Week Nine: Read Rosemarie M. Esber, “Rewriting the History of 1948: The Birth of the Palestinian Refugee Question Revisited,” Holy Land Studies, vol. 4, no. 1 (2005), pp. 55-72.

Ethnic “Return” Migration

Week Ten: Read “Did they jump or were they pushed?” (chapter one) in Hilary Pilkington, Migration, Displacement and Identity in Post-Soviet Russia (London: Routledge, 1998), pp. 3-22.

Week Eleven: Read “18 May 1944: The Deportation of Crimean Tatars” (chapter one) in Forced Migration Project of the Open Society Institute, Crimean Tatars: Repatriation and Conflict Prevention, (New York: Open Society Institute, 1996), pp. 11-28.

Week Twelve: Read Laurie P. Salitan, “Domestic Pressures and the Politics of Exit: Trends in Soviet Emigration Policy," Political Science Quarterly, vol. 104, no. 4 (Winter, 1989-1990), pp. 671-687.

Week Thirteen: Read Rainer Ohliger and Rainer Munz, “Minorities into Migrants: Making and Un-Making Central and Eastern Europe’s Ethnic German Diasporas," Diaspora, vol. 11, no. 1 (2002), pp. 45-83.

Student Research

Week Fourteen: Review

Week Fifteen: Student oral presentations.

Week Sixteen: Student oral presentations continued.

Week Seventeen: Written version of the research paper due and concluding remarks.

1 comment:

Taras said...

You have a very important course to teach! Humanity owes it to the millions of victims of 20th-century migration to make 21st-century migration more humane. In a borderless world, people must learn to live bloodlessly.

There’s only one legal successor state to the Soviet Union — the Russian Federation. Still, the legacy of Soviet “migration policy” lives on throughout the entire former Soviet Union.
Check out my recent post on the Crimean Tatar issue.