14633032_1032660580185288_8220217308142434351_nOn October 28th, 2016 Carleton University hosted a collaborative symposium between the African Centre for Migration and Society (University of the Witwatersrand) and Carleton’s Migration and Diaspora Studies Initiative to provide a critical understanding of how social identities shape migrants’ work experiences in South Africa, South Korea and Canada.

Two keynote speakers, Daiva Stasiulis (Carleton University) “Unsettling and Recolonizing A Settler Society: An Intersectional Lens on Reforms to Canada’s Migration and Citizenship Policies,” and Luin Goldring (York University) “Approaching the Chutes and Ladders of Precarious Legal Status with an Intersectional Perspective” helped to clarify the issues of migration, racism, multiculturalism, and gender and equity analysis of immigration policy in the context of Canada.

The conference also featured an photo exhibition titled, “Metropolitan Nomads: A Journey Through Johannesburg’s Little Mogadishu” by Salym Fayad and Nereida Ripero-Muñiz, which delves into the daily lives experienced by Somali migrants in the Mayfair suburb, located in the City of Johannesburg.

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The first panel “Domestic Work, Sex Work, Marriage Migration” began with the gender perspectives on the feminization of migration in the cases of South Africa, Canada and South Korea:


  • Zaheera Jinnah (University of the Witwatersrand) “Informality and Intersectionality: Reflections on the Multiple Identities of Migrant Domestic Workers in South Africa”
  • Jamie Chai Yun Liew (University of Ottawa) “Rendering the Invisible Visible: Migrant and Immigrant Sex Workers and the Law”
  • Jiyoung Lee-An (Carleton University) “‘Fake’ or ‘Real’ Marriage? Race, Gender and Class in the Governing Practices of Marriage Migration in South Korea”

The second panel “Framing Gendered and Racialized Migrations” focused on the living conditions and everyday life in a border town — Limpopo, South Africa:

  • Blair Rutherford (Carleton University) “Nervous r0016893Conditions on the Limpopo: Gendered Insecurities, Livelihoods, and Humanitarianism”
  • Thea de Gruchy (University of the Witwatersrand) “Accidental Intersectionality: Understanding the Role of Ideology in the Process of Policy Making in the Musina Model of Care”

The last panel “Deployments of Intersectionality in South Africa” explored the internal and international migration issues in the largest metropolitan city of South Africa — Johannesburg:

  • Ying-Ying Tiffany Liu (Carleton University) “Intra-Migrant Economy: Chinese Restaurant Entrepreneurship and Zimbabwean Migrant Workers in tiff2goitseSouth Africa”
  • Goitse Manthata (University of the Witwatersrand) “Urban Health, Social Identities, Intersectionality and the Work Experiences of Informal miners in the Urban periphery of Johannesburg South Africa”

The presentation papers have opportunities for a special issue of an academic journal that will be edited by co-organizers Blair Rutherford (Carleton University), Daiva Stasiulis (Carleton University), and Zaheera Jinnah (Wits University).


This event ended with a book launch for Gender and Multiculturalism: North-South Perspectives (Kwazulu-Natal University Press, 2016) which featured speeches by the authors Gopika Solanki, Jill Vickers and Daiva Stasiulis.


Three presenters at the symposium from South Africa — Zaheera Jinnah, Thea de Gruchy and Goitse Manthata got together to discuss their experiences: On crises and commonality: reflections from an international symposium on migration and symposium

We look forward to collaborating with the African Centre for Migration & Society (ACMS) at the University of the Witwatersrand again!