Schmidt, Garbi. ‘Troubled by Law: The Subjectivizing Effects of Danish Marriage Reunification Laws’.International Migration, vol. 52, Sept. 2013.
Between 2002 and 2003, Denmark introduced further limitations on its already restrictive regulations concerning family and marriage reunification. While several studies, both Danish and international, have discussed the effects of these and other family reunification laws on individual practice, we know very little about the their effects on people’s self-perceptions and norms. Based on a qualitative data set, including a total of 89 interviews with young people of immigrant background living in Denmark collected between 1999 and 2009, this article seeks to provide answers to this and related questions. As a social technology, do the regulations create changes in the practice field of the respondents which they gradually come to see as natural and reasonable, or do they leave them in a troubling subject position (Staunæs, 2005) based on a socially and legislatively regulated stigma?