Go Home? The Politics of Immigration Controversies

Roiyah Saltus, Hannah Jones (Editor), Yasmin Gunaratnam (Editor), Emma Jackson, Gargi Bhattacharyya , William Davies, Sukhwant Dhaliwal , Kirsten Forkert

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In July 2013, the UK government arranged for a van to drive through parts of London carrying the message 'In the UK illegally? GO HOME or face arrest.' This book tells the story of what happened next.

The vans were short-lived, but they were part of an ongoing trend in government-sponsored communication designed to demonstrate toughness on immigration. The authors set out to explore the effects of such performances: on policy, on public debate, on pro-migrant and anti-racist activism, and on the everyday lives of people in Britain. This book presents their findings, and provides insights into the practice of conducting research on such a charged and sensitive topic.

1 Introduction
Living Research 1: Why are we doing this? Public sociology and public life
2 Permeable borders, performative politics and public mistrust
Living Research 2: Emotions and research
3 Immigration and the limits of statistical government
Living Research 3: Migration research and the media
4 Spaces and places of governance and resistance
Living Research 4: Ethics in uncomfortable research situations
5 Un/deserving migrants and resisting dehumanisation
Living Research 5: Public anger in research (and social media)
6 Conclusion: 'ordinary' people and immigration politics
Living Research 6: Collaborations
Afterword by Kiri Kankhwende
Appendix: further details on research methods
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationManchester
PublisherManchester University Press
Number of pages208
ISBN (Print)978-1-5261-1322-1
Publication statusPublished - 3 Mar 2017


  • Government
  • Communication
  • Immigration
  • Racism
  • Activism
  • Migrant
  • Britain
  • Research
  • Ethics


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