“Why Care Now” in Forced Migration Research?

Imagining a Radical Feminist Ethics of Care


  • Christina Clark-Kazak University of Ottawa


Migration, ethics, feminism, care


This article lays out the ethical, epistemological, and methodological reasons for radical care ethics in research in forced migration. Drawing on a growing body of literature and recent initiatives to codify ethics in forced migration studies, it highlights the transformational potential of a radical feminist care approach to the “ethical turn” in the field.  I suggest that radical care ethics re-centers reciprocal human relationships in forced migration research to address specific ethical challenges posed by the criminalization of migration, extreme power asymmetries, precarities in migration status and politicization of migration policies. It is incumbent on all forced migration researchers to think proactively and carefully about ethics beyond procedures prescribed by institutional processes. I conclude with ways in which we can build on examples of radical care ethics in forced migration studies to imagine an “otherwise” (Povinelli 2012b) in our field.

Author Biography

Christina Clark-Kazak, University of Ottawa

I am an Associate Professor at uOttawa’s Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, Past President of the International Association for the Study of Forced Migration and immediate past Editor-in-chief of Refuge: Canada’s Journal on Refugees. I have previously worked for York University, Saint Paul University, the Canadian government and the Coalition to Stop the Use of Child Soldiers. I have also served as President of the Canadian Association for Refugee and Forced Migration Studies, Director of York University’s Centre for Refugee Studies and Associate Principal (Research and Graduate Studies) at York’s bilingual Glendon campus. My research focuses on: age discrimination in migration and development policy; political participation of young people; and inter-disciplinary methodologies.


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How to Cite

Clark-Kazak, C. (2023). “Why Care Now” in Forced Migration Research? : Imagining a Radical Feminist Ethics of Care. ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies, 22(4), 1151–1173. Retrieved from https://acme-journal.org/index.php/acme/article/view/2210



Themed Section: Departures, Arrivals, and Encounters: Feminist Understandings of