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In 2014, the ethics and politics of hospitality were brought into stark relief. Three years into the Syrian conflict, which had already created nearly 2.5 million refugees and internally displaced 6.5 million, the UN called on industrialised countries to share the burden of offering hospitality through a fixed quota system. The UK opted out of the system whilst hailing their acceptance of a moral responsibility by welcoming only 500 of the ‘most vulnerable’ Syrians. Given the state’s exclusionary character, what opportunities do other spaces in international politics offer by way of hospitality to migrants and refugees? Hospitality can take many different forms and have many diverse purposes. But wherever it occurs, the boundaries that enable it and make it possible are both created and unsettled ...


‘Space is political and ideological. It is a product literally filled with ideologies.’

Henri Lefebvre

‘All geographies are, in the last analysis, moral geographies.’

Michael J. Shapiro

In 2014 the Syrian conflict brought the ethics and politics of migration into stark relief. After three years of fighting that had, by that point, produced 2.5 million refugees and displaced 6.5 million people within Syria’s non-functioning borders, the UN called on Western industrialised states to share the burden of hospitality through a fixed-quota system. By the end of the year Germany had welcomed around 20,000 and Sweden 9,000, whilst the UK government negotiated an opt-out from the deal in January 2014. Instead, it offered resettlement to 500 of the ‘most vulnerable’, including women and girls who had suffered sexual violence, ...

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