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Families migrating together 

Families migrating together
Families migrating together

Renos K. Papadopoulos

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date: 07 May 2021

This chapter focuses on refugee families, but the processes that it discusses are also applicable to other forms of migration. The term ‘involuntary dislocation’ is employed to address the uniqueness of these phenomena, emphasizing that under these conditions not only is the family members’ psychosocial state shaken, but their entire being. Hence, another key term is used, that of ‘onto-ecological settledness’ to refer to the familiar arrangement individuals and families have, which relates the totality of their being to the entirety of their environment, and it is this arrangement that is thrown into turmoil during involuntary dislocation. Then, families experience ‘onto-ecological unsettledness’, and specific forms of this are identified and discussed. Emphasis is given to the complexity of the impact such upheavals create, which include not only negative, but also positive outcomes. The ‘Adversity Grid’ is introduced as a useful framework to counteract simplified and polarized perceptions of the complex implications of involuntary dislocation, and which also differentiates distress from disorder.

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