Jan C. Jansen & Simone Lässig, eds.

Refugee Crises, 1945-2000: Political and Societal Responses in International Comparison

Publications of the German Historical Institute. Cambridge University Press, 2020.


This timely study examines responses to mass refugee movements by a range of actors, from local communities to supranational organizations. Bringing together ten case studies from around the world, encompassing the global North and South alike, Refugee Crises 1945–2000 explores a broad spectrum of types of migration and of international and domestic contexts. While the driving forces and numbers of people involved, and the backgrounds (national, religious, social) of the migrants, vary considerably, this book highlights a common factor: that each receiving country was confronted with the crucial question of how to deal with the arrival of a large number of people seeking refuge. They could not simply be sent away, but they were also widely seen in the receiving countries as an unpredictable challenge to stability and social cohesion. Taking a long-term perspective, this is an eloquent contribution to the intense public debate about the impact of refugee migration on state stability, societal cohesion and as an impetus for social change.