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The issue of the return of African migrants settled in Europe is far from new, with work focusing essentially on the aspirations to return, and the processes of its realisation. As relevant as it may be, this focus is based on a limited approach, due to the privilege given to the spatiality of the phenomenon, which betrays a normative conception inherited from immigration and development policies. Submitting our understanding of return, to a category that is inseparable from the management of migratory flows, does not allow us to adequately consider return as a spatial, but also political, cultural and identity-based displacement, that must be resituated in the long history of this Afro-European space. This change of temporal scale implies a change of epistemological regime that we wish to explore from the point of view of people of Congolese and Rwandan descent who were born, socialised, or both, in Belgium.

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Journal article



Publication Date





210 - 234