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Title: Seeking respect, fairness, and community : low-wage migrants, authoritarian regimes, and the everyday urban
Authors: Kathiravelu, Laavanya
Keywords: Social sciences::Sociology
Issue Date: 2019
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Source: Kathiravelu, L. (2019). Seeking respect, fairness, and community : low-wage migrants, authoritarian regimes, and the everyday urban. In S. Brunnegger (Ed.), Everyday Justice: Law, Ethnography, Injustice (pp. 58-80). doi:10.1017/9781108763530.004
Abstract: Singapore is a city-state with high dependencies on Asian low-wage migrants to work in dirty, dangerous, and undesirable jobs in domestic work, shipyards, construction sites, and factories. These are forms of labour shunned by citizens and the middle class in the city, and engender a highly stratified population, as well as separate everyday lives. Without legalized protections such as minimum wage laws, low-wage migrants constitute a very marginalized and vulnerable population. After riots by low-wage Indian migrants, their rights in the city have been further curtailed. Taking that incident as a starting point, this chapter examines how migrants themselves articulate notions of what is fair and just, within a space where their civil liberties are limited. Using ethnographic data, interview material, and media reports from Singapore, this chapter also examines state and non-governmental discourses of justice. It demonstrates the ways in which these varying claims and discourses are unequally salient yet mutually constitutive. In taking an approach to rights that focuses on access and inclusion within the city, this chapter questions fixed and uncontextualized epistemological and ontological starting points in determining what is fair, equitable, and just.
ISBN: 978-1-10-848721-4
DOI: 10.1017/9781108763530.004
Rights: This material has been published in Everyday Justice: Law, Ethnography, Injustice edited by Sandra Brunnegger []. This version is free to view and download for private research and study only. Not for re-distribution or re-use. © Cambridge University Press 2019
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:SSS Books & Book Chapters

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