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Children’s mediating role and challenges in refugee and migrant families’ everyday life

Seminar organized by Center for Migration and Integration (MIAU) at Aarhus University.

11.09.2019 | Narges Ghandchi

Dato man 25 nov
Tid 09:30 17:30
Sted Room D120, Danish School of Education, Aarhus University, Campus Copenhagen, Tuborgvej 164, 2400 Copenhagen NV

Studies and empirical data from several national contexts illustrate that children and youth are supposedly quicker in learning the language and deciphering cultural codes of migration destinations. Consequently apart from their own challenges in coping with their everyday practices at home, school, and among their peers, they also assist their parents with translating between migrant and refugee families’ mother tongue and the host countries’ main languages. In linguistic anthropology and applied linguistics, these children and youth are technically called Language Brokers, and language brokering has drawn academic attention from a number of perspectives over the past two decades. The issue is, however, of high importance and relevance due to ongoing mobility and migration across the world, particularly, from the Global South to the Global North. In present Europe as a consequence of downgrading newly-arrived and more established refugees’ legal positions, many refugee families have faced extra expenses for interpreting pertaining to medical care, school meetings, legal, and, in general, everyday matters. To overcome this, several families benefit more often from their children and youth as linguistic resources for assistance. This seminar concentrates on a review of studies on child language brokering, provides case studies about children’s engagement within families with difficult past due to war, trauma, and the like, and discusses how children and youth may be affected during brokering tasks in their relation to the parents as well as to authorities. Moreover as part of these children’s everyday (linguistic) struggles, the seminar presents studies on the everyday challenges of children with refugee background at school.

See the full programme.

The seminar is free; however, there are a limited number of places.  Please register before 1 November.

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