The Transnationalized Social Question: Migration and the Politics of Social Inequalities in the Twenty-First Century

ISBN : 9780199249015

Thomas Faist
416 ページ
156 x 234 mm

The social question is back. Yet today's social question is not primarily between labour and capital, as it was in the nineteenth century and throughout much of the twentieth. The contemporary social question is located at the interstices between the global South and the global North. It finds its expression in movements of people, seeking a better life or fleeing unsustainable social, political, economic, and ecological conditions. It is transnationalized not only because migrants and their significant others entertain ties across the borders of national states, staying in touch with family and friends, receiving or sending financial remittances in transnational social spaces. Also of importance are cross-border recruitment schemes for workers and the cross-border diffusion of norms appealed to in the case of migration-for example, the social right to decent work as a human right. Moreover, migration can become an issue of inclusion or exclusion in fields important to life chances in the emigration, transit, or immigration states-a transnationalization of national states. And, as in the nineteenth century, political conflicts arise, constituting the social question as a public concern. In earlier periods class differences dominated conflicts. While class has always been criss-crossed by manifold heterogeneities, not least of all cultural ones around ethnicity, religion, and language, it is these latter heterogeneities that have sharpened in situations of immigration and emigration over the past decades. Casting a wide net in terms of conceptual and empirical scope, this book tackles both the social structure and the politics of social inequalities. It sets a comprehensive agenda for research which also includes the public role of social scientists in dealing with the transnationalized social question.


1 Introduction: Migration as the Transnationalized Social Question
Part I: Approaching the Transnationalized Social Question
2 The Social Question Then and Now: From Voice to Exit?
3 The Nexus of Cross-Border Migration and Social Inequalities
Part II: Social Inequalities in Social Protection
4 Social Rights and Social Standards in Cross-Border Migration
5 Migration, Social Protection, and the (Re)Production of inequalities in the European Union
6 Social Protection Among Small Groups in European Transnational Social Spaces
Part III: The Transnational Puzzle: The Politics Around the Social Question
7 Externalization in Cross-Border Migration
8 Immigration Countries: Internalizing the Social Question
9 Emigration: Development and Securitization in Global Nations
Part IV: Outlook
10 The Socio-Natural Question: The Future is the Present
11 No Alternative? The Public Role of Social Scientists in the Transnational Social Question


Thomas Faist is Professor of Sociology at Bielefeld University. His fields of interest are transnational relations, cross-border migration, citizenship, and social policy. His previous publications include Dynamics of International Migration and Transnational Social Spaces (2000), Dual Citizenship in Europe (2007), Beyond a Border: The Causes and Consequences of Contemporary Immigration (with Peter Kivisto, 2010), Diaspora and Transnationalism: Concepts, Theories and Methods (with Rainer Baubock, 2010), and Environmental Migration and Social Inequalities (with Robert McLehman and Jeanette Schade, 2016).