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64461-01 - Seminar: Migrant Labour, Land, and Borders in Namibia and Switzerland 3 KP

Semester Frühjahrsemester 2022
Angebotsmuster einmalig
Dozierende Luregn Lenggenhager (luregn.lenggenhager@unibas.ch)
Giorgio Miescher (giorgio.miescher@unibas.ch, BeurteilerIn)
Inhalt The course serves as a preparation for the 3rd winter/summer school jointly organised by the Universities of Basel and Namibia in the framework of the project Learning for (Ex)Change. It enables students from Namibia and Switzerland to jointly and comparatively work on topics defined by both partners. Whereas the previous two winter/summer schools focused on “Small Town Transformation” and “Food systems and the Environment in Rural Areas”, the focus is now on the history and presence of migration and labour in border regions of both countries.
Under colonial rule (1884-1990), Namibia’s economy was built on the exploitation of migrant workers. Migrant workers were neither allowed to bring their families nor to change the employer. This state controlled contract labour system was a crucial instrument of the racist colonial state to divide the African population into distinct categories with different legal regimes. Although officially abolished with the country’s independence, the legacy of the contract labour system is still alive in Namibia today. Short-term seasonal working contracts, for instance, continued to exist Furthermore, recent manifestations of xenophobia and/or racism are rooted in the century-long division of the African population into insiders and outsiders, local and migrants by strict controls of movement along the lines of place of origin and ethnic affiliation.
Migration and labour are also linked in the context of Switzerland. The “Saisonniers”-system, for example, was based on seasonal workers, often from Italy, with limited contracts after which they had to return home and reapply. Like in Namibia, they could neither bring their families to their place of employment nor benefit from the Swiss social security network. Even after the abolition of the “Saisonnierstatut” in 2002, seasonal work remained common in Switzerland, in particular in low-income sectors like agriculture and tourism. Divers forms of migrant work stood and stand for an increasing fragmentation of the inhabitants of Switzerland into Swiss nationals and various categories of foreigners, including refugees, cross-border commuters or seasonal workers. The legal framework is paralleled by an enduring xenophobia in Switzerland and a political climate, in which a considerable part of Swiss voters blame changing groups of ‘foreigners’ as scapegoats for all kinds of evil.
In the course, we discuss the history of migrant labour, border making, alienation and xenophobia and its enduring legacies in Namibia and Switzerland on a general level, as well as in relation to particular case studies in the borderlands of Southern Namibia and the region of Basel. Thereby, we also prepare the participants for the challenges of a bi-national summer/winter school and joint projects with fellow students from an African university.
The seminar is open to students of all relevant disciplines. It serves as a preparation for two joint excursions with students from the University of Namibia. The field trips offer the opportunity for collaborative thinking about and comparing of labour relations, processes of exclusion and inclusion between locals and migrants and the role of internal and international borders. Thereby the field trips introduce participants to methodologies of comparative research and oral history at home and abroad.
These joint field trips to both countries will take place around June/July/August 2022 and the second part of 2022. Due to the pandemic, we can confirm at a later stage only. Participants of the seminar are strongly recommended to also take part in the two field trips. The field trips will be 2 weeks each, and due to the nature of the project it is compulsory to attend both field trips complementing one another. The project is funded by the Mercator Stiftung Schweiz therefore most of the cost for participation will be covered.
Bemerkungen Credit Points: Seminar 3 (Excursions 5, formally part of the autumn semester 2022)


Teilnahmebedingungen The number of participants for the field trips is limited. If necessary, a selection will be made based on qualification and motivation. Interested candidates please send a 1page letter of motivations to wanda.rutishauser@unibas.ch by end of January 2021.
Unterrichtssprache Englisch
Einsatz digitaler Medien kein spezifischer Einsatz


Intervall wöchentlich
Datum 24.02.2022 – 26.05.2022
Zeit Donnerstag, 14.00-16.00 Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Datum Zeit Raum
Donnerstag 24.02.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 03.03.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 10.03.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Fasnachtsferien
Donnerstag 17.03.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 24.03.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 31.03.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 07.04.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 14.04.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Ostern
Donnerstag 21.04.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 28.04.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 05.05.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 12.05.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 19.05.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Geographie, Seminarraum EG 0-09
Donnerstag 26.05.2022 14.00-16.00 Uhr Auffahrt
Module Modul: Areas: Afrika (Master Studiengang Europäische Geschichte in globaler Perspektive )
Modul: Erweiterung Gesellschaftswissenschaften B.A. (Bachelor Studienfach Politikwissenschaft)
Modul: Erweiterung Gesellschaftswissenschaften M.A. (Master Studienfach Politikwissenschaft)
Modul: Fields: Environment and Development (Master Studiengang African Studies)
Modul: Fields: Governance and Politics (Master Studiengang African Studies)
Modul: Interdisciplinary and Applied African Studies (Master Studiengang African Studies)
Modul: Migration, Mobility and Transnationalism (Master Studiengang Changing Societies: Migration – Conflicts – Resources )
Modul: Projects and Processes of Urbanization (Master Studiengang Critical Urbanisms (Studienbeginn vor 01.08.2020))
Modul: The Urban across Disciplines (Master Studiengang Critical Urbanisms)
Vertiefungsmodul Global Europe: Arbeit, Migration und Gesellschaft (Masterstudium: European Global Studies)
Wahlbereich Bachelor Geschichte: Empfehlungen (Bachelor Studienfach Geschichte)
Wahlbereich Master Geschichte: Empfehlungen (Master Studienfach Geschichte)
Leistungsüberprüfung Lehrveranst.-begleitend
An-/Abmeldung zur Leistungsüberprüfung Anmelden: Belegen; Abmelden: nicht erforderlich
Wiederholungsprüfung keine Wiederholungsprüfung
Skala Pass / Fail
Wiederholtes Belegen nicht wiederholbar
Zuständige Fakultät Philosophisch-Historische Fakultät, studadmin-philhist@unibas.ch
Anbietende Organisationseinheit Zentrum für Afrikastudien