We consider cross-border migration through the lens of the capabilities approach, with special reference to transnational migration and to implications for the approach itself. Cross-border migration has profound and diverse effects, not least because it accelerates change in the nature of political community. A capabilities approach can be helpful through its insistence on multi-dimensional, inter-personally disaggregated, reflective evaluation. At the same time, the realities of migration exercise pressure on capabilities thinking, to deepen its underlying social and political theory and nuance its efforts to counter communitarian tendencies. By extending its attention to migrants and the locality-spanning social and political spaces in which they live, the capabilities approach will be able to better concretize and situate the picture of the ‘we’ who ‘have (or seek) reason to value’ purported goods and rights.

Additional Metadata
Keywords capabilities approach, human security, identity, international migration, transnationalism
Publisher International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University (ISS)
Persistent URL hdl.handle.net/1765/19675
Citation
Gasper, D.R, & Truong, T-D. (2010). Movements of the ‘we’. ISS Working Paper Series / General Series (Vol. 495, pp. 1–22). International Institute of Social Studies of Erasmus University (ISS). Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/19675