Migration, Social Responsibility and Moral Imagination

With Kristin Heyer, Professor of Theology, Boston College;

and Dan Kanstroom, Professor of Law, Boston College and co-director of the CHRIJ

Recorded February 10, 2022.

Heyer presents her chapter named in the event title, and then Kanstroom presents on their jointly authored book chapter, "Empathy, Legitimacy, Faith, and the Dangerously Uncertain Future of Migration" from Heyer's new co-edited volume "Christianity and the Law of Migration."

Heyer chapter description:

Drawing on traditions of biblical hospitality, social doctrine, and human rights, literature in Christian migration ethics typically focuses on the plight and agency of migrants and the relative duties of reception within a global framework. Given the tendency for secular policy discourse to address immigration issues primarily in terms of the discrete actions of migrants, making individuals the primary target for enforcement, relational emphases in Christian ethics can help reorient analyses to consider the roles historical relationships and transnational actors play in abetting migration. The relational elements of Christian ethics—social anthropology, the universal destination of created goods, social sin, structural justice—help illuminate complex causes of migration and shared accountability. In particular, such resources bring into relief the relationship between destructive ideologies and structures of injustice that deny relationality and bring harm to migrants and receiving communities alike. Portraying immigration through a lens of individual culpability alone obscures these multileveled, subtle dynamics at play. Given nonvoluntary dimensions of social sin, Christian migration ethics must also address the more diffuse and complex structures and ideologies that abet complicity in injustice and apathy.

The book is available in hardcover and as an e-book from Routledge Press: https://www.routledge.com/Christianity-and-the-Law-of-Migration/Allard-Heyer-Nadella/p/book/9780367486693
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