Reorienting the ‘Balkan Route’
Islam, Education and (Post-) Cold War Genealogies of Mobility on the fringes of West Asia
‘The Balkan route’ figures in many contemporary debates on migration to the European Union (EU). The region is characterised in these debates as a transitory corridor, a source of human trafficking, or even as a bedrock of radical Islamic threat on the EU’s external border. These accounts not only demonise particular types of migrants based on categories of racialised religious difference, but also valorise specific forms of mobility, and horizons of aspirations oriented towards the EU.
Against this backdrop, this paper traces less salient, and yet enduring horizons of aspirations, well-being, and geographies of mobility that are embedded in, and formed by multiple orientations and geopolitical/historical entanglements of Muslim lives along the Balkan Route traversing Ottoman/Post-Ottoman, Cold War/Post Cold War spatiotemporal thresholds as an arena of interaction and aspiration. In this paper, I focus on the role of education as an enduring force in sustaining alternative corridors of mobility and circulation, criss-crossing the Balkans and West Asia, and how participating in these networks produces active agents in a transregional world.
Drawing on life histories, ethnographic fieldwork and archival research, this paper elucidates shared threads of cultural intimacy and shared practices of cultural circulation. Ultimately, the paper attempts to provincialise and historicise the arguments about the East-West flows.
Whose side is God on?
Christianity and the War on Drugs
The War on Drugs defines Rodrigo Duterte’s presidency in the Philippines. Thousands have been killed since 2016. Although it has been condemned by leaders and activists around the world, the War on Drugs continues to enjoy strong public support. How does Christianity respond? In the Philippines, the question is inescapable given that religion has played a prominent role as a civil society actor. But Christianity, in relation to the War on Drugs, has been fragmented.
This lecture draws on interviews with community leaders and national religious figures whose perspectives on faith and anti-criminality diverge. It will spell out these divergences, giving emphasis on the dominant religious discourses that justify the War on Drugs. Put simply, Duterte’s is God’s avenger. The lecture will end by reflecting on the challenges of confronting the rise of religious nationalism that supports authoritarian regimes around the world.
Dr. Jayeel Serrano Cornelio is professor and director of the Development Studies Program at Ateneo de Manila University.
Jayeel Serrano Cornelio
Ateneo de Manila University
University of Antwerp – Hof van Liere
To reach conference rooms de Tassis, Dürer and Prentenkabinet, enter the buildings of the city campus through the main entrance in the Prinsstraat 13. Then cross the small inner court. In the passage to the inner garden, enter the door on your left and climb the stairs. You will find the rooms “de Tassis” and “Dürer” on the second floor. Room “Prentenkabinet” is located on the first floor. People who have difficulty walking, can take the elevator. In the passage to the garden, you take the door on your right. The elevator is situated a bit further down the corridor on your right.
To reach conference rooms Elsschot and Gresham, use the entrance in Prinsstraat 13B (the same entrance as the University Club Restaurant). Climb the stairs to the second floor, where you will find rooms “Elsschot” and “Gresham”.