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Children at the Borders
Linköping University, Department of Thematic Studies, Department of Child Studies. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
2016 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)Alternative title
Barn vid gränserna (Swedish)
Abstract [en]

In the wake of a steady flow of child migrants attempting to cross borders and states’ efforts to restrict immigration, various public controversies have arisen about the rights of asylum-seeking children. The ‘moral gap’ between the outcome of democratically enacted laws and the aim of controlling immigration, on the one hand, and public calls to protect the universal rights of asylum seeking children, on the other, have created a political challenge for Western democracies. This thesis sets out to examine two particular settings in which norms about the rights of asylum-seeking children and immigration control have been established and contested over the years: the Swedish Migration Court of Appeal and Sweden’s largest morning paper, Dagens Nyheter. It combines empirically oriented analysis with theoretical enquiry, and it brings the issue of the rights of asylumseeking children into dialogue with the contemporary political-philosophical debate about membership, rights and borders.

Abstract [sv]

I kölvattnet av en stadig ström av barn som migrerar över statsgränser har medial rapportering, protester och offentliga diskussioner aktualiserat frågor om asylsökande barns rättigheter. Det ”moraliska glappet” mellan tillämpningen av demokratiskt stiftade lagar i syfte att reglera invandringen,å ena sidan, och offentliga krav på att skydda universella rättigheter för asylsökande barn, å andra sidan, har växt fram som en samtida utmaning för demokratiska stater att hantera. I denna avhandling undersöks två specifika arenor där normer om asylsökande barns rättigheter och immigrationskontroll har etablerats och ifrågasatts under de senaste åren; den svenska Migrationsöverdomstolen och Sveriges största morgontidning, Dagens Nyheter. Avhandlingen kombinerar empiriska analyser med teoretiska undersökningar om asylsökande barns rättigheter i dialog med en samtida politisk filosofisk diskussion om medlemskap, rättigheter och gränser.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Linköping: Linköping University Electronic Press, 2016. , p. 90
Series
Linköping Studies in Arts and Science, ISSN 0282-9800 ; 706
Keywords [en]
Children, Asylum, children’s rights, citizenship, right claims, socio-political practice, borders, migration
Keywords [sv]
Barn, asyl, barns rättigheter, medborgarskap, rättighetsanspråk, socio-politisk praktik, gränser, migration
National Category
International Migration and Ethnic Relations Ethics Philosophy Political Science (excluding Public Administration Studies and Globalisation Studies) Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-133238ISBN: 9789176856024 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:liu-133238DiVA, id: diva2:1056799
Public defence
2017-01-20, TEMCAS, Hus Tema, Campus Valla, Linköping, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2016-12-15 Created: 2016-12-15 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. 'We beg you, let them stay!': Right claims of asylum-seeking children as a socio-political practice
Open this publication in new window or tab >>'We beg you, let them stay!': Right claims of asylum-seeking children as a socio-political practice
2017 (English)In: Childhood, ISSN 0907-5682, E-ISSN 1461-7013, Vol. 24, no 3, p. 316-332Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Children’s rights to asylum have emerged as an urgent political challenge. This article uses a number of cases discussed in Sweden’s largest morning paper to analyse claims of asylum-seeking children and how these claims challenge the normative limits of contemporary asylum, concerning what and who ought to be recognized by law. Even though the universality of the child constitutes a running theme, the arguments and the conception of children underpinning the claims are diverse. The article suggests that the claiming of rights as a socio-political practice could be a vital analytical approach to studying children’s rights and offers a much needed alternative to the dominant mainstreaming paradigm.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
London: Sage Publications, 2017
Keywords
Asylum, children’s rights, citizenship, deportation, mainstreaming, right claims, socio-political practice
National Category
International Migration and Ethnic Relations Ethics Media Studies Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-133237 (URN)10.1177/0907568216674785 (DOI)000407128200004 ()
Available from: 2016-12-15 Created: 2016-12-15 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved
2. Childrens Rights to Asylum and the Capability Approach
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Childrens Rights to Asylum and the Capability Approach
2016 (English)In: Ethical Perspectives, ISSN 1370-0049, E-ISSN 1783-1431, Vol. 23, no 1, p. 101-130Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

The prospect of large populations of children migrating across national borders raises urgent political and ethical questions about childrens rights to asylum. In recent years, there has been an increase in scholarly interest in migrating children and childrens rights, but this interest has thus far been scant in political theory. The present article uses the Capability Approach to discuss childrens rights to asylum and to examine the prospects and limitations of the approach in this context. It underlines that, despite a global consensus on the rights of the child, the political and ethical challenges to childrens rights to asylum cannot be reduced to a question of the implementation of universal rights or capabilities of children a matter of technicalities or mainstreaming of legislation. Instead, the question of childrens rights to asylum is a highly political and ethical matter, characterized by ambivalent conceptualizations of children and conflicting interests that continue to pose a considerable challenge to the organisation of the international political and legal system. The Capability Approach has the potential to fill a theoretical gap with regard to childrens interests and the setting of threshold levels, although it continues to wrestle with questions of how to confront the asylum-seeking child as a political subject within well-functioning democracies and how to determine a specific list of capabilities and corresponding duties in deliberation between the right to self-determination of nation states and universal entitlements of children.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
PEETERS, 2016
Keywords
Children; migration; asylum; Capability Approach; childrens rights
National Category
Other Social Sciences
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-128971 (URN)10.2143/EP.23.1.3141836 (DOI)000375827100005 ()
Available from: 2016-06-09 Created: 2016-06-07 Last updated: 2017-08-28
3. Children's Rights to Asylum in the Swedish Migration Court of Appeal
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Children's Rights to Asylum in the Swedish Migration Court of Appeal
2017 (English)In: International Journal of Children's Rights, ISSN 0927-5568, Vol. 25, no 1, p. 85-113Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Children’s rights to asylum have led to political controversies in a number of countries in recent years. This article focuses on the translation of nearly universally recognised children’s rights principles into a domestic practice of immigration control, and explores how legal norms regarding children’s rights to asylum have developed in the Swedish Migration Court of Appeal 2006–2013. Court decisions are analysed with a focus on the meanings given to the best interests of the child, how this is given weight against state interests of immigration control, and how children’s interests are given normative force. It is only in a small minority of cases in which the Best Interests Principle (BIP) in fact does have a decisive normative force in granting residence permits and the meanings and use of children’s interests in court argument makes evident that the BIP enables both the granting and denial of residence permits. The BIP is doing normative work in double directions.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Brill Nijhoff, 2017
Keywords
children’s rights; law; decision-making; migration; best interests of the child; Migration Court of Appeal; asylum
National Category
Social Sciences Interdisciplinary
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-139972 (URN)10.1163/15718182-02501009 (DOI)
Available from: 2017-08-23 Created: 2017-08-23 Last updated: 2018-01-13Bibliographically approved

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