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Refugees, Capitalism and the British State:

The roots of refugees’ oppression and implications for action

Many thanks to all those who commented on earlier drafts of this pamphlet, in particular Sam, Annie, Jacqui, also Vik, those who commented on the book that this pamphlet draws from, and all those who supported and advised me in the course of my research, in particular my supervisors Lena and Sarah, and others too numerous to mention. The responsibility for any errors or shortcomings is of course mine alone.

1. Introduction

1a. The research behind the pamphlet

2. Capitalism and the creation of refugees

2a. Modern day imperialism

2b. The consequences of under-development

2c. Enforcement of super-exploitation by authoritarian states

2d. Inter-imperialist rivalries leading to war

3. The international reserve army of labour

3a. Racism in britain

3b. The role of migrants in the British economy

3c. Gender and migration

4. The political role of the asylum system

4a. Detention

4b. Dispersal

4c. The right to work

4d. The asylum decision making process

5. Responses

5a. Histories of resistance

5b. The delegation of governance to the voluntary sector

5c. State interventions to influence forms of action

6. Implications for action


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