Research Agenda

The interdisciplinary Research Group “Human Rights Discourse in Migration Societies” (MeDiMi) studies the scope, forms, and consequences of the expansion of human rights discourse in migration societies. MeDiMi’s starting observation is that actors in contemporary migration societies often refer to human rights norms discursively in order to articulate images of themselves as well as their interests. We refer to this process as “the advance of human rights”, or “humanrightization” (“Vermenschenrechtlichung”).

MeDiMi traces the humanrightization of discourse in migration societies in three contexts. These contexts include the legal system, areas of political action, as well as other professional or everyday socio-cultural contexts in which perceptions of self and the attitudes of actors within migration societies are expressed and formed. Legal analysis, social-science research, and cultural studies of ten selected fields will provide the empirical basis for a theory of discursive practice in migration societies. This will enable us to achieve a new understanding of the role of human rights in contemporary societies, especially ­European ones.

MeDiMi is funded by the German Research Foundation (DFG). It consists of ten research projects and one coordination unit with more than 30 researchers from law, social sciences, and cultural studies. It is a collaboration of Justus Liebig University Giessen, Philipps University Marburg, Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam, Goethe University Frankfurt, University of Applied Sciences Jena, and the University of Münster.

You can find the detailed MeDiMi Research Agenda here.