We Live Together, We Fight Together: Solidarity with Migrants Among the Southern-European Radical Left


We Live Together, We Fight Together
Solidarity with Migrants Among the Southern-European Radical Left

Francesca Maviglia, Yale-NUS College 

(Initially published in YNUJ Volume 2, 2018)


The Greek “Refugee Crisis” saw the emergence of a large international flow of volunteers and civil society organizations who mobilized to alleviate the dire situation of migrants and refugees. While most of these actors operate within the framework of humanitarian work, some groups ideologically affiliated with the radical left conceive of their activities as actively political, rejecting humanitarianism and adopting the concept of “solidarity” instead. This paper will examine their motivations, ideology, and rhetoric; building on Miriam Ticktin’s distinction between “care” and “cure,” I argue that activist groups see their work with migrants as part of a long-term “political cure” to larger social problems. Finally, the paper will consider the historical experience of fascism and the tradition of internationalism as features of the cultural identity of the Southern European left that have shaped this particular view of migration activism.

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