Mobilities, Boundaries, and Travelling Ideas: Rethinking Translocality Beyond Central Asia and the Caucasus

Manja Stephan-Emmrich and Philipp Schröder (eds.)
Forthcoming

This collection brings together a variety of anthropological, historical and sociological case studies from Central Asia and the Caucasus to examine the concept of translocality. The chapters scrutinise the capacity of translocality to describe, in new ways, the multiple mobilities, exchange practices and globalizing processes that link places, people and institutions in Central Asia and the Caucasus with their counterpart in Eurasia, China and the Middle East.

Illuminating translocality as a productive concept for studying cross‐regional connectivities and networks, this volume is an important contribution to a lively field of academic discourse. Following new directions in Area Studies, the chapters aim to overcome ‘territorial containers’ such as the nation‐state or local community, and to emphasise the significance of processes of translation and negotiation for understanding how meaningful localities emerge beyond conventional boundaries.

Structured by the four themes ‘crossing boundaries’, ‘travelling ideas’, ‘social and economic movements’ and ‘pious endeavours’, this volume proposes three conceptual approaches to translocality: firstly, to trace how it is embodied, narrated, virtualised or institutionalised within or in reference to physical or imagined localities; secondly, to understand locality as a relational concept rather than a geographically bounded unit; and thirdly, to consider cross‐border traders, travelling students, business people and refugees as examples of non-elite mobilities that provide alternative ways to think about what ‘global’ means today.

Mobilities, Boundaries, and Travelling Ideas will be of interest to students and scholars of the anthropology, history and sociology of Central Asia and the Caucasus, as well as for those interested in new approaches to Area Studies.


Mobilities, Boundaries, and Travelling Ideas: Rethinking Translocality Beyond Central Asia and the Caucasus

Edited by Manja Stephan-Emmrich and Philipp Schröder
ISBN Paperback: 9781783743339
ISBN Hardback: 9781783743346
ISBN Digital (PDF): 9781783743353
ISBN Digital ebook (epub): 9781783743360
ISBN Digital ebook (mobi): 9781783743377
DOI: 10.11647/OBP.0114


Manja Stephan-Emmrich is a junior professor for the cross-section Islam in Asian and African Societies and the Institute for Asian and African Studies at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Germany). Currently, she is investigating the complex entanglements of translocal Islamic education networks, Tajik youth’ work experiences and their religious experience related to places in Tajikistan, Russia and the Middle East. She has published several anthropological articles and book chapters on Islamic lifestyles, education, migration/mobility and Muslim business in Dubai.

Philipp Schröder is a post-doctoral researcher at the Institute for Asian and African Studies at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Germany). Currently, he is working on his research project entitled ‘The "China-Business” – An Ethnography of Kyrgyz Traders and their Translocal Livelihoods in-between 'Home', China, and Russia’. He has published several articles on urbanization, youth and well-being, especially concentrating on Kyrgyzstan.

Kamoludin Abdullaev is an independent historian, affiliated with the Russian-Tajik Slavonic University (Tajikistan). He has taught at the Tajik State University, Ohio State University, Yale University and others. His research topics cover national and Muslim movements and migration in Central Asia, as well as contemporary developments and historical topics related to Tajikistan and Central Asia.

Abdullah Mirzoev is a doctoral candidate at the Institute for Asian and African Studies at Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin (Germany). His research embraces the producing, distributing and consuming of Islamic fashion in Tajikistan and the United Arab Emirates. He received his MSc from the Tajik National State University.

Azim Malikov is a post-doctoral department member at the Institute of History the Academy of the Sciences of Uzbekistan. His research interests cover ethnicity, identity, collectivity, Islam and nationalism in Central Asia and Uzbekistan. He has worked as a research fellow at the Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology (Germany).

Elena Kim
is a post-doctoral researcher at the American University of Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan). She has received her PhD from Universität Bonn (Germany) and has previously studied in Hungary and Kyrgyzstan. Her current research and publications deal with gender development, women, natural resources and violence.

Henryk Alff is a research associate at the Centre for Development Studies at Freie Universität Berlin (Germany) and is assistant editor of the "Central Asian Analytical Digest”. His research and numerous publications concentrate on migration, mobility, trading processes and borderland studies in Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and China. He received his PhD in human geography and migration studies.

Svetlana Jacquesson is the director of the Central Asian Studies Institute at the American University of Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan) and head of the masters program. Her research and teaching concentrate on Kyrgyzstan. She has participated and organized several workshops and was a research fellow at Max Planck Institute for Social Anthropology (Germany) and the French Institute of Central Asian Studies (Uzbekistan).

Susanne Fehlings is a postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Social and Cultural Anthropology at the Universität Tübingen (Germany). Her research covers informal trading routes and markets, globalization from below and urban anthropology in Armenia, post-Soviet Eurasia and the Caucasus.

Emil Nasritdinov is an assistant professor at the Department of Anthropology at the American University of Central Asia (Kyrgyzstan). He has worked within several research projects on migration and social dynamics in Kyrgyzstan and has published several book chapters and articles on spiritual nomadism, migration, transnationalism and regional change.

Barak Kalir is an assistant professor at the Department of Anthropology and Sociology at the University of Amsterdam (Netherlands) and co-director of the Institute for Migration and Ethnic Studies. His ethnographic work on migrants from Latin America and China has been published in leading journals including International Migration, Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, Social Anthropology, and Sociology of Religion.