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The politics of accusation amidst conditions of precarity in the Nakivale resettlement camp


Nakueira, Sophie (2019). The politics of accusation amidst conditions of precarity in the Nakivale resettlement camp. Cambridge Journal of Anthropology, 37(2):39-56.

Abstract

Nakivale, the oldest refugee camp in Uganda, hosts refugees fleeing various forms of political unrest from several African countries. Uganda’s humanitarian framework makes it an attractive place for refugees. Little is known about the role that humanitarian policies play in shaping interactions between different actors or the politics of accusation that emerges within this settlement. In a context in which the status of a refugee can confer preferential access to scarce resources, different refugee communities struggle to define themselves, their neighbours and kin in terms of the camp’s humanitarian language. Describing the everyday anxieties that define life in the camp, this article shows how accusations become powerful resources that refugees draw upon to meet the criteria for resettlement to a third country, but also how these forms of humanitarian assistance rely on processes of exclusion that create endemic accusations of corruption, criminality and even witchcraft.

Abstract

Nakivale, the oldest refugee camp in Uganda, hosts refugees fleeing various forms of political unrest from several African countries. Uganda’s humanitarian framework makes it an attractive place for refugees. Little is known about the role that humanitarian policies play in shaping interactions between different actors or the politics of accusation that emerges within this settlement. In a context in which the status of a refugee can confer preferential access to scarce resources, different refugee communities struggle to define themselves, their neighbours and kin in terms of the camp’s humanitarian language. Describing the everyday anxieties that define life in the camp, this article shows how accusations become powerful resources that refugees draw upon to meet the criteria for resettlement to a third country, but also how these forms of humanitarian assistance rely on processes of exclusion that create endemic accusations of corruption, criminality and even witchcraft.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Department of Social Anthropology and Cultural Studies
Dewey Decimal Classification:300 Social sciences, sociology & anthropology
390 Customs, etiquette & folklore
Uncontrolled Keywords:Envy, humanitarianism, legal pluralism, migration, resettlement, witchcraft
Language:English
Date:2019
Deposited On:14 Feb 2020 11:04
Last Modified:07 Apr 2020 07:26
Publisher:Berghahn Books Ltd.
ISSN:0305-7674
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.3167/cja.2019.370204

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