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date: 18 September 2020

Abstract and Keywords

This chapter examines how discursive framings of ‘the refugee crisis’ problematically reduce the intractable politics of displacement to a singular and sudden event. This chapter also argues that sanctuary—as a lexicon and practice—potentially disrupts this problematic lens in two important ways. First, sanctuary unsettles a crisis lens that depicts displacement and persecution in ahistorical terms; instead, this rich tradition of sanctuary situates contemporary politics within more complex genealogies. Second, sanctuary challenges a crisis lens that frames displacement as an isolated problem, exclusively impacting refugees. The chapter concludes that these sanctuary expressions cannot be confined to traditional scalar logics of the city, the state, or even the planet. Instead, sanctuary is better understood as a movement, enacted through the register of the global-intimate.

Keywords: sanctuary, global-intimate, citizenship, anticolonial migrant justice, irregularized resident, refugee crisis

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