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Journal Cover Cosmopolitan Civil Societies : An Interdisciplinary Journal
  [1 followers]  Follow
  This is an Open Access Journal Open Access journal
   ISSN (Print) 1837-5391
   Published by University of Technology Sydney Homepage  [7 journals]
  • Students, Migrants or Citizens: the Violence of Liminal Spaces

    • Authors: Devleena Ghosh
      Abstract: Half a decade ago, after a spate of violent incidents in 2009 and 2010, where Indian students had been assaulted and robbed and one student, Nitin Garg, had been murdered, Indian students and taxi drivers held a big rally in Melbourne which made front-page news in India. The rally followed a number of demonstrations calling for greater police action and protection. The attacks had already attracted condemnation in the Indian media; for example, the influential Indian news magazine, Outlook, ran a cover story titled ‘Why the Aussies hate us’ (Outlook, 2010), concluding that Australia needed to examine its racial biases and the hangovers from the White Australia policy. 
      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
  • The Production of the Indian Student: Regimes and Imaginaries of
           Migration, Education, Labour, Citizenship and Class

    • Authors: Shanthi Robertson
      Pages: 1 - 22
      Abstract: The so-called Indian student ‘crisis’ of 2009 and 2010 is often analysed in the context of how the violence against students challenged Australian multiculturalism and revealed both underlying racism and denial of racism in Australian society (see, for example, Mason 2012, Dunn, Pelleri & Maeder-Han 2011, Singh 2011). Some analyses further interrogate the incidents in relation to Australia’s relationship to India as one of its Asia-Pacific neighbours and key trading partners (Mason 2012). Yet there was a far wider context of global transformations to regimes of immigration, education, labour and citizenship that shaped the experience of Indian students in Australia leading up to and after the ‘crisis’ itself. The local context and local responses to the crisis are analysed thoroughly in other papers of this volume. What I seek to do in this chapter is to situate the very presence (and the subsequent vulnerabilities) of Indian students in Australia within several intersecting political, economic and cultural forces operating at national, regional and global scales. The focus of this paper is thus not on the violent incidents or their immediate consequences, but rather on the specific ways that transforming immigration and citizenship regimes, global labour markets, and global imaginaries of mobility and class facilitated Indian students’ mobility into Australia and shaped elements of their lives while they were here. In particular, I focus on how national mobility regimes, influenced by global processes, crafted and re-crafted the subjectivities of Indian students as by turns desirable and problematic.
      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
  • Contract gangs: race, gender and vulnerability

    • Authors: Heather Goodall
      Pages: 23 - 36
      Abstract: While violence directed at Indian students in Australian cities has been highlighted in the Indian and Australian press, far less attention has been paid to the violence directed at Indians in rural areas. This has most often involved Indians employed in contract labour in seasonal industries like fruit or vegetable picking. This article reviews various media accounts, both urban and rural, of violence directed at Indians from 2009 to 2012. It draws attention to the far longer history of labour exploitation which has taken place in rural and urban Australia in contract labour conditions and the particular invisibility of rural settings for such violence. Racial minorities, like Aboriginal and Chinese workers, and women in agriculture and domestic work, have seldom had adequate power to respond industrially or politically. This means that in the past, these groups been particularly vulnerable to such structural exploitation. The paper concludes by calling for greater attention not only to the particular vulnerability of Indians in rural settings but to the wider presence of racialised and gendered exploitation enabled by contract labour structures.
      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
  • The Question of Racism: How to Understand the Violent Attacks on Indian
           Students in Australia?

    • Authors: Michiel Baas
      Pages: 37 - 60
      Abstract: For the past ten years I have been involved in research on the topic of Indian student-migrants in Australia. What started in India in 2004 with the ostensibly simple questions why there was such a surge in Indian students’ enrolments in Australia, turned into a study which had the question of migration at the heart of its investigation. Realising that the majority of Indian students based their decision for Australia on the relatively easy pathway the country offered towards permanent residency my research focused on understanding how such trajectories from students to migrants took shape. However, as I argued in Imagined Mobility (Anthem Press, 2010), while the propensity to apply for PR may be high, permanently residing in Australia was often not the objective. Instead many Indian students saw a PR as facilitating the start of transnational existence. In this paper I will draw upon a vast collection of newspaper articles as well as ethnographic material collected over this period in order to produce a personalised account of how I, as an academic researcher, observed the discourse about Indian students in Australia ‘migrate’ from them being welcome international students and would-be migrants to unwelcome profiteers whose place in Australian cities was highly contested. Questions I will focus on are: how did the violent attacks and subsequent debate about their racist nature impact the lives and trajectories of Indian student-migrants as starting transnationals; how did they themselves reflect on these attacks especially in relation to them now being ‘permanent residents’; and finally, what role do ‘Indian students’ continue to play in Australia’s skilled migration debate?

      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
  • Mapping Progress : Human Rights and International Students in Australia

    • Authors: Andrew Jakubowicz, Devaki Monani
      Pages: 61 - 80
      Abstract: The rapid growth in international student numbers in Australia in the first decade of the  2000s was accompanied by a series of public crises. The most important of these was the outbreak in Melbourne Victoria and elsewhere of physical attacks on the students. Investigations at the time also pointed to cases of gross exploitation, an array of threats that severely compromised their human rights. This paper reviews and pursues the outcomes of a report prepared by the authors in 2010 for Universities Australia and the Human Rights Commission. The report reviewed social science research and proposed a series of priorities for human rights interventions that were part of the Human Rights Commission’s considerations.  New activity, following the innovation of having international students specifically considered by the Human Rights Commission, points to initiatives that have not fully addressed the wide range of questions at state.
      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
  • Attacks on Indian Students and the Harris Park Protests: A Consul General
           Looks Back

    • Authors: Amit Dasgupta
      Pages: 81 - 92
      Abstract: From the end of May 2009, for about a year, academics and scholars, media, educationists, parents, students, diplomats on both sides, and the governments of India and of Australia were focused on a single issue: attacks on Indian students in Australia. It is no exaggeration to say that the frequency and number of attacks and, in some cases, the uncalled-for viciousness, was disturbing, confusing and totally unanticipated. Perhaps the single biggest failure was the collective inability of all stakeholders to anticipate the problem and to act in time. The system failure ought to have been recognized well before the keg burst. Once it exploded, it overwhelmed the system like a tsunami. 
      PubDate: 2015-12-01
      Issue No: Vol. 7, No. 3 (2015)
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