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The mixed migration-mobility couple

Dialogical alternatives to studying the acculturation of migrants

Migration governance and the field of migration control works with a series of assumptions about the public mandate. This is a central tenet of liberal representative democracy. Politicians, policy-makers and officials implementing policies within institutions and services all work with an explicit or implicit public mandate. We can call this the figure of the public.

Such governance produces the public as a reified category.

When politicians, policy-makers and officials want to get a sense of this figure it becomes understood in terms of public opinion polls and social attitudes surveys. Increasingly under conditions of populism and direct democracy the public are also understood via their activities on social media and also increasingly as a vox pop public who appear an opine within mainstream new media interviews.

When it comes to migration the public becomes polarized between pro and anti-immigration attitudes. In short, the public are understood as having worldviews on migration. This can be understood as a promethean figure of an attitudinal public. Migration itself has become lightening rod issue for governments across Europe and elsewhere in the context of the refugee crisis and imagined ages of migration.

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