Britain’s vote in June 2016 to leave the European Union came as a shock to many people, inside and outside the country. For many of us living in Britain, it brought to the surface feelings of confusion and upset, perhaps even anger and betrayal. The vote also brought divisions in society in Britain that we may have ignored or been unaware of into stark relief. A year on, and with the (in many quarters) unexpected loss of Conservative Prime Minister Theresa May’s majority in the House of Commons following the June election and the consequences this has for her policy of ‘hard Brexit’, this confusion—and those divisions—show little sign of abating.
Over the next few months, FR will be releasing a series of three free-to-view ‘virtual’ issues, drawing on our archive of articles published in the journal over the past 18 years. Each will engage with issues that were central to the debates around ‘Brexit’ prior to the vote, and which have continued to be the focus of heated discussion since, as people try to make sense of the vote and what it means.
In this first virtual issue, we have collected together seven articles on migration. The articles consider a range of issues as they relate to migration, gender, and sexuality, from which pregnant bodies are ‘worthy’ of state protection or state restriction (Eithne Luibhéid, FR 83) to migrant women’s labour organising (Sundari Anitha and Ruth Pearson, FR 108). While most of the articles address the experience of migrants in the UK, we have also included perspectives from Ireland (Luibhéid) and Australia (Suvendrini Perera, FR 103). While diverse in content and context, the articles have the following in common: in each, working from theoretically and politically engaged feminist perspectives, the authors have sought to bring the voices and lives of those who have migrated to the centre of their accounts.
We hope that these articles will provide food for thought as you reflect on your own thoughts and feelings around Brexit.
- ‘we are not objects, we are not things’: ethnic minority women’s views of the UK home office immigration campaigns
- a migrant ethic of care? negotiating care and caring among migrant workers in London’s low-pay economy
- migrant women and social reproduction under austerity
- birth, belonging and migrant mothers: narratives of reproduction in feminist migration studies
- sexual regimes and migration controls: reproducing the Irish nation-state in transnational contexts
- oceanic corpo-graphies, refugee bodies and the making and unmaking of waters
- striking women—striking out