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Cluster of Excellence EXC 2052 - "Africa Multiple: reconfiguring African Studies"

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Uhamaji wa wanyerwanda: migration and conflict in Ituri, DR Congo

Research Team


Much of the ongoing violent conflict in the Eastern Democratic Republic of Congo is related to both volunteer and forced migration of Kinyarwanda speakers in the past, and linked disputes of autochthony, identity and access to land. In the course of one of the most recent population movements in the region, the massive, but until now non-documented migration of Hutu peasants from North Kivu to Ituri, one can already observe the development of similar conflict lines. By empirically analysing the migration of Hutu to, and their settlement in, Ituri, as well as the rumours and stereotypes travelling with this population movement, this research project will conceptualize the Banyarwanda movement, the migration of Kinyarwanda speakers, as a ‘travelling idea’ which connects and reconnects various actors along its trajectory and results in a variety of informal conflictual institutions and assemblages which can both trigger and solve conflict. The dissemination of the idea of Uhamaji wa wanyerwanda is not a linear transplantation from A to B. Instead, emphasis should be given to co-production and practices seeking to deliberately frame this migration pattern in strategic ways to serve certain political and economic purposes.

Scheduled Project Duration

01.10.2019 – 31.03.2021

Webmaster: Dr. Doris Löhr

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