Cultures, Migrations, Borders - MigBord2016

SCHOOL OF SOCIAL SCIENCES - Department of Social Anthropology and History
4 Jul 2016 to 15 Jul 2016

Previous Years' Invited Speakers



Bridget Anderson is Professor of Migration and Citizenship at the University of Oxford, and Research Director of the Centre on Migration, Policy and Society (COMPAS). Her interests include citizenship, nationalism, immigration enforcement (including 'trafficking'), and care labour. Her most recent authored book is Us and Them? The Dangerous Politics of Immigrantion Contrlos (OUP, 2013). Care and Migrant Labour: Theory, Policy and Politics, co-edited with Isabel Shutes, was published by Palgrave in May 2014. Although now an academic Bridget started her working life in the voluntary sector working with migrant domestic workers, and she has retained an interest in domestic labour and migration She has worked closely with migrants' organisations, trades unions and legal practitioners at local, national and international level. 


Heath Cabot is an assistant professor of anthropology at the University of Pittsburgh. She completed her M.A. (2005) and PhD (2010) at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and she has since held postdoctoral positions at Princeton University and the University of Sussex. She is a legal and political anthropologist whose research interests lie in the areas of aid distribution, ethics and epistemology, and citizenship. Her first research project focused on the asylum procedure in Greece, humanitarian aid and human rights professionals, and the everyday effects of EU and Greek law and policy. She has recently begun a new project on social solidarity pharmacies and the (re)distribution of pharmaceuticals and care in the face of a healthcare crisis in Greece. Her work has been funded twice by the Fulbright Foundation in Greece, the Wenner Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, The US National Science Foundation, and the Woodrow Wilson National Fellowship Foundation. She is also the co-editor of the Political and Legal Anthropology Review. 


Jane Cowan holds a post as Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Sussex, and is Director of the Sussex Rights and Justice Research Centre. She is also a member of the Sussex Centre for Migration Research and the Centre for Gender Studies. She received an MA (1982) and PhD (1988) in Sociocultural Anthropology and Ethnomusicology from Indiana University, Bloomington. From 2002-2005 she was Head of the Anthropology Department at the University of Sussex. Among her current commitments, she serves as a member of the University Council elected by the academic staff. Beyond Sussex, Jane is Associate Editor of the journal, Anthropological Theory. Funded by the Macarthur Foundation, Jane carried out archival research at the League of Nations Archives and has published a series of articles since 2003 focusing on claims for rights and for Macedonian nationhood made on behalf of the so-called ‘Bulgarian minorities’ in Yugoslavia and Greece. In 2010 Jane received funding from the British Academy to undertake an anthropological and historical study of the Universal Periodic Review, a new (since 2006) human rights monitoring mechanism of the reformed Human Rights Council in Geneva. She has authored two books, Dance and the Body Politic in Northern Greece (Princeton, 1990) and Macedonia: The Politics of Identity and Difference (Pluto, 2000), and has co-edited (with M. Dembour and R.Wilson) Culture and Rights: Anthropological Perspectives(Cambridge, 2001). Since 2008, she has been an active member of the international academic network, EastBordNet, convened by Professor Sarah Green.


Panagiota - Toulina Demeli studied law and is a lawyer. She completed her master studies: "Social Anthropology and History"  in the Department of Social Anthropology and History at the University of the Aegean and received her PhD from the same department. The title of her PhD thesis is "Mothers under confinement: Maternal Reflections in a Greek women's prison". She provided legal aid to the detainees  in Pagani's detention center, in Mytilene, working for the NGO Ecumenical Programme for Refugees and also in "Villa Azadi", the Reception Center for Unaccompanied Minors in Agiassos, in Mytilene. Since 2010 she has been working for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees - UNHCR.


Olga Demetriou is Senior Researcher at the Cyprus Centre of the Peace Research Institute Oslo and teaches at the Social and Political Sciences Department at the University of Cyprus. She holds a PhD in Social Anthropology from the LSE (2002), has held post-doctoral fellowships at Oxford and Cambridge Universities, and has been responsible for the Greece and Cyprus research desks at Amnesty International. She has served as co-editor of the journal The Cyprus Review and is currently treasurer of the Society for the Anthropology of Europe of the American Anthropological Association. Her research has been funded by the Royal Anthropological Institute, the Wenner-Gren Foundation for Anthropological Research, the European Commission, the Norwegian MFA, and UNDP. Olga has been researching issues of minority rights, displacement, borders and refugeehood in Greece and Cyprus and has been a member of the COST-funded network EastBordNet, chaired by Sarah Green. She has authored two books, Capricious Borders: Minority, Population and Counter-Conduct between Greece and Turkey (Berghahn, 2013) and Refugeehood and the Post-Conflict Subject: Considering Minor Losses (forthcoming, SUNY Press), and has co-edited (with Rozita Dimova) The Political Materialities of Borders: New Theoretical Directions (forthcoming, Manchester University Press) as well as two special issues, on conflict and heritage (Journal of the Balkan and Near East Studies, 2012), and on the anthropology of Cyprus (The Cyprus Review, 2013).


Rozita Dimova is Senior Research Fellow in the Department for South Slavic Languages and Cultural Studies (Institute for Slavistics) at Humboldt University – Berlin, working on her habilitation project on borders in southeastern Europe. After receiving her PhD in Anthropology at Stanford University in 2004, Dimova was a postdoctoral research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology in Halle (2004-2006). Her fields of specialization include materiality, aesthetics, space, and consumption, migration and transnational regimes of humanitarianism. A guest co-editor of the forthcoming issue of History and Anthropology (Winter 2012, vol. 23) entitled Contested Nation-building within the International ‘Order of Things’: Performance, Festivals and Legitimization in South-Eastern Europe, Dimova is currently completing a book manuscript on aesthetics and politics in the Balkans.


Elena Fiddian-Qasmiyeh is Associate Professor of Human Geography at University College London where she is the Co-Director of the Migration Research Unit, and Director of the Refuge in a Moving World research network across UCL (@RefugeMvingWrld). Elena's research focuses on experiences of and responses to conflict-induced displacement with a particular regional focus on the Middle East and North Africa. She has conducted extensive research in refugee camps and urban areas including in Algeria, Cuba, Egypt, France, Lebanon, South Africa, Syria, Sweden, and the UK. She is currently the Principal Investigator of a new major AHRC-ESRC funded interdisciplinary research project, 'Local Community Experiences of and Responses to Displacement from Syria', which involves ethnographic research with nine local communities across Lebanon, Jordan and Turkey ( In 2016 she was also awarded a further major European Research Council award for her 5-year project, South-South Humanitarian Responses to Displacement from Syria, which will run from 2017-2022. In 2015, Elena was awarded a 2015 Philip Leverhulme Prize, and, in 2013, she was awarded the Lisa Gilad Prize by the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration (IASFM). Her recent books include The Ideal Refugees: Gender, Islam and the Sahrawi Politics of Survival (Syracuse University Press, 2014), South-South Educational Migration, Humanitarianism and Development: Views from the Caribbean, North Africa and the Middle East(Routledge, 2015); The Oxford Handbook of Refugee and Forced Migration Studies, (co-editor, Oxford University Press, 2014) and Intersections of Religion and Migration: Issues at the Global Crossroads (co-editor, Palgrave Macmillan, 2016). She has also edited special journal issues on themes including  “Refugee and Diaspora Memories (Journal of Intercultural Studies, 2013), and “Faith Based Humanitarianism in Contexts of Forced Migration” (Journal of Refugee Studies, 2011). She is the co-founding editor (with Mette Berg) of a new journal entitled Migration and Societywhose inaugural issue in 2018 will explore the theme of ‘Hospitality and Hostility Towards Migrants’ in global perspective. 


Sarah Green is Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of Helsinki. She is a specialist on location, borders and spatial relations, though the subject matter of her research over the last 20 years has been diverse and has included among others the politics of gender and sexuality, conceptions of the environment, circulation of money in the Aegean, border relations on the Greek-Albanian border and, most recently, the shifting concept of border in the eastern peripheries of Europe. Her publications include Notes from the Balkans (2005; Princeton University Press) winner of the Douglass Prize for best contribution to Europeanist Anthropology; and Urban Amazons (1997), an ethnography on separatist feminists in London. In 2008, Professor Green launched an international research network, EastBordNet dedicated to developing new approaches towards the study of borders on the eastern peripheries of Europe, from the Baltics and environs down to the Balkans and environs. The network (EastBodNet) now involves 27 countries and over 280 researchers.


Laurie Kain Hart is Professor of Anthropology at the University of California at Los Angeles and former Edmund and Margiana Stinnes Professor of Global Studies and Chair of the Department of Anthropology at Haverford College. She holds a Master of Architecture from the University of California, Berkeley, and a PhD in Anthropology from Harvard University. Her research interests include a) violence, civil war and "ethnic cleansing"; ethnicity, religion, pluralism, geopolitical borders b) space, architecture, art, material and visual culture c) medical and psychoanalytic anthropology, public health risk environment d) kinship and gender. She is the author of Time, Religion, and Social Experience in Rural Greece (1992), editor of Good People in Evil Times (Narratives of Bosnian War by Svetlana Broz) (2005), and co-editor of When Women have Differences: Oppositions and Conflicts among Women in Contemporary Greece, as well as author of articles on the long term effects of civil war, ethnic displacement, and violence. Her recent work focuses on Northern Greece (on former child political refugees of the Greek Civil War) and urban Philadelphia (collaborative research on urban segregation and social marginalisation, incarceration, and the medicalisation of poverty). 


Barak Kalir is Associate Professor at the Department of Sociology and Anthropology at the University of Amsterdam. He is co-director of the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies (IMES) and program director of the two Masters Programmes. From 2006 to 2009 he was a post-doc researcher and programme coordinator of the WOTRO/NWO Integrated Programme: Illegal but Licit on transnational flows in Asia. He has published several articles and book chapters on the subject of migration, like ‘Uncovering the Legal Cachet of Labor Migration to Israel’ in David and Koslowski (eds.) Global Human Smuggling Johns Hopkins University Press (2011). His book Latino Migrants in the Jewish State: Undocumented Lives in Israel (Indiana University Press, 2010) has been nominated for the Book Prize awarded by the Society for Economic Anthropology and has been awarded the highest recommendation at the influential American review Choice. Kalir has also co-edited with Malini Sur “Transnational Flows and Permissive Polities: Ethnographies of Human Mobilities in Asia” IIAS Publication Series, Amsterdam UP (2012). He is currently directing a 5-year ERC-funded research project on the Social Life of State Deportation Regimes (The Social Life of State Deportation Regimes: A Comparative Study of the Implementation Interface) in Spain, Greece, The Netherlands, Ireland, India, Israel and Ecuador. 


Flip Lindo took his BA in Sociology and his MA in Anthropology at the University of Amsterdam (1981). He holds a PhD in the Social Sciences from Utrecht University (1996). He worked as a Senior Research Fellow and Lecturer in the Department of Sociology and Anthropology of the University of Amsterdam, until his retirement in 2013. He has done fieldwork in Northern Greece and the Netherlands. His research topics included immigrant youth, interethnic relations, and processes/discourses of inclusion and exclusion. Nowadays he does not research anymore, but volunteers for the Dutch Council of Refugees (VluchtelingenWerk), helping refugee families who have settled in his home municipality. He remains actively interested in how people make sense of experiences from their successive face-to-face interactions pertaining to their decision to flee their home, to the preparation of their journey, to the journey itself, to their reception in the Netherlands, to their processing into "licensees" ('vergunninghouders'), to the trials and tribulations of the requirement of 'civic integration' ('inburgering') and to their settling in locally while trying to remain reconciled with their loved ones who are far away. 


Lenio Myrivili lectures on cultural theory and interface design at the Department of Cultural Technology and Communication at the University of the Aegean. Her research interests include theory of representation, borders representation and ontology , virtuality and performance, digital media and games. She has participated in research projects on museums and the digital representation of heritage. Since 2007 she is a member of EastBordNet.


Evthymios Papataxiarchis is Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of the Aegean where he directs the Postgraduate Program on “Social and Historical Anthropology” and the Laboratory of Ethnography. He has taught as a visiting professor in the Universities of Athens and Crete, in the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (Paris) and in Bogadici University (Istanbul). His publications include Lilies of the Field: Marginal People Who Live for the Moment, (ed. with S. Day and M. Stewart, Westview Press, 1999), Adventures of Alterity: The Production of Cultural Difference in Contemporary Greece, (ed., Alexandria Publications, 2006, in Greek), Worlds of Domestic Labour: Immigration, Gender and Cultural Transformations in early 21th century Athens, (with Penelope Topali and Aggeliki Athanassopoulou, Alexandria Publications, 2008, in Greek). He has also edited special issues of Ethnologie Française(v. 35, 2005) and Synchrona Themata(v. 98, 2007 and v.107, 2009) on cultural differentiation and the challenge of migration in contemporary Greek society.


Elia Petridou lectures on social anthropology and material culture at the Department of Social Anthropology and History at the University of the Aegean. She received her PhD from University College London (2001). She has done field research on food and commodity chains and has published on the flow of food, migration and politics of (ethnic) identity (e.g. 'The taste of home' in D. Miller (ed.)Home Possessions, Berg 2001). Her research interests cover a wide range of topics within material culture, such as food , clothes and fashion, museum representation and cultural heritage.


Electra Petracou is Assistant Professor in Political Geography and has a long teaching experience on the subjects that concern migration and asylum, national and European migration and border policies. She is co-director at the Laboratory of Human Movements in the Department of Geography at the University of the Aegean. She has published on migration theories and policies, migration and asylum issues in the EU and Greece, and borders and territorial strategies and practices. She is member of the MIRIADE-Irregular Migration in European Islands network and has links to NGOs, such as the Greek Council for Refugees, the Hellenic Red Cross, Antigone, etc.


Ilias Pistikos took his MA at the Department of Geography at the University of the Aegean. His thesis was about alter-globalization movement and social fora. He is a PhD candidate at the Department of Sociology at the University of the Aegean. His thesis concerns anti-racist movements in Greece. His research interests include sociology of collective action, social movements, collective identities and ideology. He worked as a social scientist for the NGO Ecumenical Programme for Refugees in Pagani's detention center, in Mytilene, in 2009.


Effie Plexousaki received her University Degree in Law from the Law School of the University of Athens in 1984 and her Ph.D. in Ethnology and Social Anthropology from the “École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales”, (Paris, France) in 1991. She has taught at the University of Crete, Panteion Panepistimion (Athens) and University of Athens. From 2000 she teaches at the University of the Aegean (Department of Social Anthropology and History). Her research interests concern the anthropology of the Mediterrannean, issues on anthropology and education and on nationalism and minority populations.


Katerina Polychroni has studied Social Anthropology at Panteion University of Athens and has recently graduated from Aegean University (2013) where she had her Master on Gender Studies (“Women and Gender: Anthropological and Historical Approaches”). Since 2008, she has been dealing as an activist with populations coming in Greece from Middle East and Africa. For the past three years she has been working specifically with Afghan travelers (immigrants, refugees, undocumented migrants, unaccompanied child immigrants) and she speaks Farsi and Dari. Her fieldwork took place mostly at a refugees’ reception center and had to do with “The experience of the migration journey and the construction of gender identity”. For the moment, she works as an interpreter in the public asylum services.


Marica Rombou-Levidi studied Politics with Sociology at Birkbeck College (University of London) in the 1970s. She also studied, performed, and taught various forms of dance at the Royal Ballet School (London), The Place (London), and Athens. During the last twenty years she has engaged into long-term ethnographic research on the relationship between the cultural and the political in Northern Greece, focusing on the northern borderlands of the country. She received her Phd in Anthropology from the University of Sussex in 2009. Between 2009 and 2012 she lectured on anthropology of music and dance at the department of Popular and Folk Music of the Epirus TEI. She is currently involved in ethnographic research in Western Macedonia on “mixed marriages” between migrant women and local men and on the production of violence within the rural household. Her research interests lie within the anthropology of the political, the relation between culture and politics, borders, migration, gender, and violence. Since 2011, she has been a member of EastBordNet.


Tracey Rosen is a College Fellow and Lecturer in Social Studies at Harvard University. She received her Ph.D. in Anthropology from the University of Chicago and was a postdoctoral fellow in the Hellenic Studies Center at Princeton University. She has received funding from the US Department of Education (Fulbright-Hays) and the Council for European Studies to conduct over three years of doctoral field research in Greece, Europe and China. Her research examines the sociocultural dimensions of the new trade relationships forged between Greece and China.  Her current book project, How «Made in China» is made in Greece tracks the introduction of Chinese merchants, commodities, and capital into local Greek markets over the course of the past fifteen years (from the adoption of the Euro to the sovereign debt crisis and its aftermath). It is conceived as an ethnography of advanced, global capitalism that examines how the representations of self/other that emerge out of this new «Sino-Hellenic» contact situation are shaped by historical categories as well as contemporary commercial practices. The book attends to both Greek and Chinese merchants to understand how forms of inter and intra-ethnic credit extension, commodity chains, competitive/cooperative strategies interface with evolving forms of trust, solidarity, and cynicism. 


Katerina Rozakou's research interests lie within the anthropology of the political, the politics of humanitarian aid and immigration, citizenship, volunteerism, solidarity, charity and civil society. She received her PhD in Social Anthropology at the University of Aegean and she has spent a year as a postdoctoral researcher at the Program in Hellenic Studies, Princeton University. Since 2014 she is a post-doctoral researcher at the University of Amsterdam in  the ERC-funded project “The social life of state deportation regimes: A comparative study of the implementation interface”. The project is a comparative investigation of the treatment of irregular migrants and failed asylum-seekers in different countries worldwide. She has published in international and Greek academic journals and she has coedited a collective volume on civil society, patronage and violence (in Greek).


Pinelopi Topali is Assistant Professor of Social Anthropology at the University of the Aegean. She has studied Mathematics (BA, Aristotle University of Thessaloniki), applied urban anthropology (MA, City University of New York) and social anthropology (Ph.D., University of the Aegean). As a post-doctoral researcher she has participated in the project “Pythagoras” (EPEAEK II) “Gender, Domestic Work and Ethic Identity: The Cross-Cultural Construction of Domestic Space in Greece” (Department of Social Anthropology and History, University of the Aegean). She has participated as a basic researcher at a research program of the European Integration Fund For the Third Country Nationals  “Research for the investigation of the profile of third country nationals legally living in Greece, working as domestic workers and a comparative study of models of institutional management in E.U. member- states”. Also, in the “ARISTEIA” research program titled “In Fertile Citizens: On the Concepts, Practices, Politics and Technologies of Assisted Reproduction in Greece”, a three year long research program funded by the European Social Fund and the General Secretariat of Research and Technology Greece. Her research interests focus on anthropology of immigration, anthropology of religion and work, Philippine and Greek ethnography and racism. She has published several articles and book chapters on the subject of migration and two books on migration, women and domestic work: Worlds of Domestic Work: Gender, Immigration and Cultural Transformations in early 21st century Athens. Athens: Alexandria, 2009 (with with E. Papataxiarchis and A. Athanasopoulou) and Silent Relations, Inter-cultural Contacts: The Case of Filipina Domestic Workers in Greece. Athens: Alexandria, 2008. 


Sevasti Trubeta is Assistant Professor at the Department of Sociology at the University of the Aegean on the subject of international relations, global society and migration. She has taught and/or worked as a researcher at the Freie Universität Berlin, the Friedrich-Schiller University of Jena and the Albert‑Ludwigs University in Freiburg. She is member of the EastBordNet network and the International Working Group on the History of Racial Sciences and Biomedicine in Central and Southeast Europe. She has authored the book Constructing identities for the Muslims of Thrace (Kritiki 2001) and Die Konstitution von Minderheiten und die Ethnisierung sozialer und politischer Konflikte. Eine Untersuchung am Beispiel der im griechischen Thrakien ansässigen ‘Moslemischen Minderheit’ (Peter Lang 1999). She has also published and co-edited books and articles on migration and minorities (e.g. with C. Voß ‘Minorities in Greece-Historical Issues and new Perspectives. Special Edition in History and Culture of South Eastern Europe. Jahrbücher für Geschichte und Kultur Südosteuropas, Munich 5, 2003/2004: 219.