Papadakis, Yiannis, Belonging in a Welfare State: Greek and Greek Cypriot Immigrants in Denmark, Ethnic and Racial Studies, 0.0 (2022), 1–20
A central question in migration studies concerns how communities of belonging can exist beyond communities of identity. Drawing from ethnographic fieldwork with Greek and Greek Cypriot immigrants in Denmark and theoretical discussions on “translocational belongings”, this article suggests that security, equality and a sense of ownership are key factors that contribute towards an enhanced a sense of belonging premised on solidarity, even in the presence of cultural differences related to identity. Migrant belongings, it is further suggested, should not only be treated as plural but also as comparative vis-à-vis the country of origin. The immigrants’ narratives often focussed on comparisons between Denmark with Greece or Cyprus emphasizing how their interactions with the Danish welfare state contributed to a, comparatively-speaking, more profound sense of belonging in Denmark. Yet, the rise of anti-immigrant policies and rhetoric, along with the persistent challenges to the welfare state, have led to rising feelings of alienation.