Protetion of Refugees and Migrants



The aim of this course is to critically present and discuss the way protection of refugees and migrants is conceived, designed and implemented mainly in the current period, based however in a brief historical perspective. The different sections will discuss the different stakeholders that take part in the field of migration and asylum and the way their interventions have evolved. Students will become familiar with the relevant institutional framework on a European and national level, as different case studies of the legal and institutional framework will be presented. Central aspect of this course is the critical approach of the distinction between refugees and migrants, and this aspect will be developed based in different key periods. Greece, the Balkan states and the EU are central to the analysis of this course and this is where students will observe the way policies and practices are implemented and interconnected. Finally, students will have the opportunity to reflect on the use o

Course Syllabus
  • 1st course introduction
  • 2nd course: Mobility and permanence, boundaries and borders, place and space, international migration and regulation of movement a brief historical review
  • 3rd course: The emergence of human rights, Refugeeness, refugeedom, the historical, social and legal construction of the refugee status, the notions of refugee migrant asylum seeker…
  • 4th course The border regime, “Transit migration”, the emergence of camps
  • 5th course: migrants rights, domestic workers, forced labor, human trafficking,
  • 6th course: On intersectionality and on racism
  • 7th course: migration and gender
  • 8th course: Humanitarian regime, International organisations and NGOs
  • 9th course: The post 2015 era
  • 10th course: Reflecting on the notion of “refugee crisis”
  • 11th course: “Fortress Europe”
  • 12th course: The Common European Asylum System and its evolution
  • 13th course: Reflection discussion on the words and representations of the world of migrations


  • 2nd – A presentation of Elis Island in order to begin understanding reception/ On place-space, a methodological and more analytical discussion/ historical facts about international migration / text of Arendt “We refugees”
  • 3rd – Colonialism, nation-state and forced mobility
  • 4th – Refugeedom (Gatrell)/ Representing refugees throughout photos/ The emergence of human rights/ The legal and social construction of the refugee
  • 5th – The European border regime/ Transit migration/ Case studies
  • 6th – Gender and migration/ Intersectionality
  • 7th –Asylum and migration basic definitions/ non-refoulement/ push backs at the borders/ The discussion on refugees and migrant’s rights and citizenship and naturalization/ Different examples
  • 8th – Critically discuss the use of the term crisis/ the era before and during 2015/ Documentary “Feeling of a home”
  • 9th – The post 2015 era/ Safe country of origin/ Safe third country/ European Agenda on Migration/ Hotspots
  • 10th – Camps and “campization” and forms of non-collective housing, formal, informal, institutional, grassroots
  • 11th – NGOisation of migration/ “Pop-up” governance
  • 12th – On humanitarianism and humanitarian governance
  • 13th – A reflective discussion on the basic aspects that this course covered – presentations

Films and documentaries


In the following list you can find films and documentaries that relate to the topics that covers this course. You can find links where access is free (YouTube, vimeo), and in certain cases you can have access through the platform cinobo (there is a free trial period of 14 days). I marked in red films and documentaries where access is not clear. If you are interested in one of those write me an email and we will see together how to get access. Cinobo: ).


Entre les murs (French) Laurent Cantet (2008). (YouTube, Spanish subs)

(second generation, education, immigrants, France suburbs)


Persepolis, Marjane Satrapi (2007)

(Gender, intersectionality, Iran, religion)


Xenia, Giannis Koutras (Greek-English subs), (2014). (Cinobo-trial)

(Second generation, immigration, gender, LGBTQI, Greece, Citizenship)


Raw material, Christos Mitsis (Greek-English subs),(2011).  Documentary (Cinobo-trial)

(immigrant workers, Athens, financial crisis, undeclared labour)


LA92, D.Lindsay -TJ Martin (2017). Documentary

(USA, LA, racism, police violence, riots)


Cat in the wall, V. Kazakova – M. Mileva, (2019). (Cinobo-trial)

(Immigrant communities, London, leaving together, financial crisis)


At home, A. Karanikolas, (2014). (Cinobo-trial)

(Gender, immigration, domestic workers, exclusion, Athens)


13th, Ava DuVernay, (2016), Documentary,

(USA, Enslavery, racism, prison system)


 It’s a free world, Ken Loach, (2007)

(Irregular immigration, labor rights, UK, financial crisis)


Welcome, Philippe Loiret, (2009)

(Irregular migration, refugee camps, Calais)


James Baldwin Debates William F. Buckley (1965). Discussion

(USA, racism, 1960-1970)


I am not your negro, R. Peck, (2016), Ντοκιμαντέρ 

(USA, racism, 1960-1970)


La haine, M. Kassovitz, (1995). (French, English subs

(Second generation immigration, racism, suburbs, France, police violence)


Le Havre, A. Kaurismäki, (2011), (Cinobo-trial)

(living together, racism, irregular migration)


The other side of hope, A. Kaurismäki, (2017), (Cinobo-trial) 

(living together, racism, irregular migration, asylum scheme)


Feeling of a home, M. Kastanides– I. Chaviara (2017). Documentary,     

(Refugee «crises», borders, Eidomeni, refugee camps)


Fire at sea, Gianfranco Rosi, (2016). Documentary

(Refugee «crises», Mediterranean, solidarity, border controls)


Amerika Square, G. Sakaridis, (2016). (Cinobo-trial)

(living together, racism, inclusion, neighborhood)

The olive tree, Parwana Amiri – Marily Stroux – W2Eu (Welcome to Europe), (2021). Animation

(Refugee voices)


The right to be a host, Decolonizing Architecture, (2018). Documentary

(Refugee voices, borders, inclusion, Sweden)


The edge of heaven, Fatih Akin, (2007). (Cinobo-trial)

(Inclusion, integration, gender, Turkey, Germany)


In the fade, Fatih Akin, (2017). (Cinobo-trial)

(Racism, exclusion, institutional violence)


The immigrant, Charlie Chaplin, (1917).


Hotel Rwanda (full movie)

(Rwanda, refugees, struggle)


Ellis, JR, (2015). Short film

(Ellis Island, USA, immigration)


Bread and Roses, Ken Loach, (2000)

(Irregular immigration, labor rights, gender)


 The cut, Fatih Akin, (2014), (Cinobo-trial)

(Armenian genocide)


The visitor, T. McCarthy, (2007)

(9/11, institutional violence, exclusion, inclusion, USA)