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Migrant margins: the streetlife of discrimination

Hall, Suzanne ORCID: 0000-0002-0660-648X (2018) Migrant margins: the streetlife of discrimination. Sociological Review, 66 (5). 968 - 983. ISSN 0038-0261

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Identification Number: 10.1177/0038026118771282


The streetlife of discrimination emerges in the intersections of global migration and urban marginalisation. Focusing on livelihoods forged by migrants on four peripheral streets in Birmingham, Bristol, Leicester and Manchester, this article draws on face-to-face surveys with over 350 self-employed proprietors. Despite significant variables amongst proprietors, these individuals had all become traders on streets in marginalised parts of UK cities, and the article addresses whether ‘race’ matters more than class for how certain groups become emplaced in the city. Narratives of inequality and racism feature prominently in the proprietors’ accounts of where they settled in the city and what limited forms of work are available in the urban margins. Yet as significant to proprietors’ experiences of trade are repertoires of entrepreneurial agility and cross-cultural exchange. Through the concept of the ‘migrant margins’ the article explores the overlap of human capacities and structural discrimination that spans global and urban space. It combines urban sociological understandings of ‘race’ and inequality with fluid understandings of makeshift city-making that have emerged in post-colonial urban studies. Such combinations encourage connections between the histories and geographies of how people and places become bordered, together with city-making practices that are both marginal and transgressive.

Item Type: Article
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Additional Information: © 2017 The Author
Divisions: Sociology
Subjects: J Political Science > JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration
Date Deposited: 05 Dec 2017 10:04
Last Modified: 14 Jun 2024 22:57
Projects: ES/L009560/1
Funders: Economic and Social Research Council

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