Library Header Image
LSE Theses Online London School of Economics web site

Waiting for citizenship: pragmatics of belonging of Burundian refugees in protracted exile. The case of Ulyankulu Settlement, Tanzania

Miletzki, Janna (2014) Waiting for citizenship: pragmatics of belonging of Burundian refugees in protracted exile. The case of Ulyankulu Settlement, Tanzania. PhD thesis, London School of Economics and Political Science.

Text - Submitted Version
Download (18MB) | Preview


To what extent have refugees in Ulyankulu settlement, Tanzania, developed a sense of belonging and de facto citizenship through their agency despite government control? This question forms the basis of the research design of this thesis. Refugees have lived in protracted exile in many countries. The aim of this thesis is to assess such a situation by theorising and empirically unravelling refugees’ practices of belonging in a rural settlement. While studies within forced migration literature have been mostly empirical, some theoretical ones suggest that camps are spaces of exception that turn refugees into victims without agency, or spaces of myth-making. Acknowledging these theorisations, this thesis develops a conceptual framework in which, despite control by governments and international agencies, refugees’ agency in developing a sense of belonging and claiming de facto citizenship is underlined. Ultimately, this understanding also suggests important recommendations for policy. Taking the case study of Burundian refugees in Tanzania, who arrived in the 1970s, this research is based on qualitative field research methods using techniques such as participant observation and interviews with refugees, Tanzanian citizens, agents of humanitarian organisations and the government in Ulyankulu settlement and Dar es Salaam in 2012. It analyses discourses concerning the naturalisation of Burundian refugees, and it evaluates practices and narratives of first and second generation refugees concerning their experiences of waiting for citizenship, and everyday negotiations of belonging. This thesis aims at contributing to forced migration literature, and by its considerations of spatiality and temporality to human geography. As a theoretical contribution, it offers a conceptual framework examining the interplay between exclusion from citizenship and a sense of belonging in the space of refugee camps. Empirically, it analyses the various forms of control over refugees, and sheds light on their interactions with refugees’ ‘pragmatics of belonging’ and ‘pragmatics of waiting’ for citizenship.

Item Type: Thesis (PhD)
Additional Information: © 2014 Janna Lucia Miletzki
Library of Congress subject classification: H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Sets: Departments > Geography and Environment
Supervisor: Mercer, Claire

Actions (login required)

Record administration - authorised staff only Record administration - authorised staff only


Downloads per month over past year

View more statistics