This review offers a critical mappingo f the construction-in-progress of refugees and displacement as an anthropological domain of knowledge. It situates the emergence of “the refugee” and of “refugee studies” in two ways: first, historically, by looking at the management of displacement in Europe in the wake of World War II; and second, by tracing an array of different discursive and institutional domains within which “the refugee” and/or “being in exile” have been constituted. These domains include international law, international studies, documentary production by the United Nations and other international refugee agencies, development studies, and literary studies. The last part of the review briefly discusses recent work on displacement, diaspora, and deterritorialization in the context of studies of cultural identity, nationalism, transnational cultural forms—work that helps to conceptualize the anthropological study of displacement in new ways.


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  • Article Type: Review Article
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