We understand how important the language that we use is, especially when it comes to shaping narratives around migration and migratised communities. That’s why we have dedicated this section of our website to exploring the ramifications of certain language, and to show solidarity to migratised communities by standing up against harmful narratives. Our hope is a society in which the migrant experience is respected in all of its multitudes, and we know that the words we use are an integral part of making this happen.
In this section, we will be debunking the terms “illegal immigration”, “refugee crisis” and “integration”. We will also be questioning some common talking-points around unity, deservingness, the economy, and whiteness. Please navigate to the menu at the bottom of this page to explore these topics in more detail.
Migration: key definitions
Migration defines the phenomenon of human movement. The migration of communities and peoples across land and sea has occurred as long as there have been humans…
If you would like to find out more about some key definitions relating to migrants and migration, then please click here.
“All creatures orient to home… Green turtles hatch and go down to the sea, where they travel many thousands of miles, sometimes for ten years or twenty. When ready to lay their eggs, they retrace their journey back to the very patch of beach where they were born. Some birds annually fly for thousands of miles, losing as much as half their body weight, in order to mate in their birthplace… Nearly every creature shares some version of this deep attachment to a place in which life has been known to flourish, the kind of place we call home….
It is in the nature of human attachment that every journey and expulsion sets into motion the search for home… there is a universally shared ache to return to the place we left behind or to found a new home in which our hopes for the future can nest and grow… Because our brains are larger than those of birds and sea turtles, we know that it is not always possible, or even desirable, to return to the same patch of earth. Home need not always correspond to a single dwelling or place… Home is where we know and where we are known, where we love and are beloved. Home is… sanctuary: part freedom, part flourishing… part refuge, part prospect”.Shoshana Zuboff, ‘The Age of Surveillance Capitalism’