The Unchosen Ones (Paperback)
Diaspora, Nation, and Migration in Israel and Germany (German Jewish Cultures)
Indiana University Press, 9780253043627, 380pp.
Publication Date: August 28, 2019
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Since the refugee crisis of 2015, the topic of migration has moved to the center of global political debates. Despite the frequently invoked notion that current developments are without historical precedent, migration has been a constant feature of contemporary history, particularly in Europe. Jannis Panagiotidis considers a particular type of migration, co-ethnic migration, where migrants seek admission to a country based on their purported ethnicity or nationality being the same as the country of destination. Panagiotidis looks at immigration to Germany and Israel, focusing on individual cases where migrants were not allowed to enter the country. These rejections confound notions of an "open door" or a "return to the homeland" and present contrasting ideas of descent, culture, blood, and race. Panagiotidis shows that migration is never a simple matter of moving from place to place. Questions of historical origins, immigrant selection and screening, and national belonging are deeply ambiguous and complicate migration even in nations that are purported to be ethnically homogenous.