AANB05091U The Anthropology of Migration, Introductory Course

Volume 2016/2017

Board of Studies, Department of Anthropology


Migration studies have undergone a major transformation in recent decades. Formerly, social scientists tended to research migration in terms of one-way “push-pull” movements from a place of origin to a migration destination, and the social, economic and cultural processes whereby immigrants were integrated into the new homeland. In recent years, however, migration scholars have redirected their approach so that they now view population movements as closely associated with the emergence, and further consolidation, of fields of social and economic relations spanning the physical distances involved in the migratory move. This means that migrants have strong ties to the place they have left as well as to the place or places to which they move. This is perhaps most clearly brought out in the concepts of transnationalism, diaspora and global networks that have gained prominence in migration research and refugee studies since the 1980's, along with the research method of multi-sited fieldwork. These new analytical and methodological perspectives raise important questions concerning the social organization of migration as well as our understanding of processes of socio-cultural continuity and change. In this course we will examine how anthropology can contribute to migration research in the light of this new development. How can we draw on anthropological theory in the conceptualization of the spatially and temporally extended processes that are set in motion by migratory movements? And how can we develop an ethnographic research practice that can encompass these complex processes?

Learning Outcome

By the end of the course the student should be able to:

• Identify and formulate central anthropological questions with regard to the topic of migration. 

• Critically discuss concepts and theories related to the subject. 

• Demonstrate how relevant research questions relate to a concrete empirical setting.

BSc-, Credit-, Open Education and all international students: 500 pages obligatory literature.

Course literature will be available in Absalon on the course website.

A combination of lectures and seminars
  • Category
  • Hours
  • Exam
  • 35
  • Exercises
  • 12
  • Lectures
  • 7
  • Preparation
  • 120
  • Seminar
  • 21
  • Study Groups
  • 15
  • Total
  • 210
7,5 ECTS
Type of assessment
Length: The portfolio exam can be taken individually or in groups of maximum four students. The portfolio exam consists of 3-7 submissions. The number of submissions is set by the lecturer. The total length of all of the submissions must not exceed 30,000 keystrokes for a single student. For groups of two students the maximum is 40,000 keystrokes. For groups of three students the maximum is 45,000 keystrokes and for groups of four students the maximum is 50,000 keystrokes.
All aids allowed
Marking scale
7-point grading scale
Censorship form
No external censorship
There is appointed a second internal assessor to assist with the assessment when the first assessor finds this necessary.

1. re-exam:

An essay with a revised problem statement must be submitted at the announced date. The students must sign up for the 1. re-exam.

Please note that the re-exam is an essay even for courses, where the ordinary exam is a portfolio exam.

2. re-exam:

A new essay with a revised problem statement must be submitted at the announced date next semester. The students must sign up for the 2. re-exam.

Criteria for exam assesment

See description of learning outcome. Formalities for Written Works must be fulfilled, read more: MSc Students/ BA students (in Danish)/ exchange and credit students