“Migration research and postcolonial studies bring together extensive field work and archival work.” – 5 questions answered by María do Mar Castro Varela and Barış Ülker

5 questions to authors of Verlag Barbara Budrich

About the book:

How is tolerance reflected in urban space? Which urban actors are involved in the practices and narratives of tolerance? What are the limits of tolerance? Doing Tolerance: Urban Interventions and Forms of Participation by Maríado Mar Castro Varela and Barış Ülker (eds.) answers these questions by considering different forms of urban in/exclusion and participatory citizenship. By drawing together disparate yet critical writings, the volume examines the production of space, urban struggles and tactics of power from an interdisciplinary perspective. Illustrating the paradoxes within diverse interactions, the authors focus on the conflict between heterogeneous groups of the governed, on the one hand, and the governing in urban spaces, on the other. Above all, the volume explores the divergences and convergences of participatory citizenship, as they are revealed in urban space through political, socio-economic and cultural conditions and the entanglements of social mobilities.

Maríado Mar Castro Varela and Barış Ülker, the editors of Doing Tolerance: Urban Interventions and Forms of Participation, took the time to answer our 5 questions.

Short vitae:

Barış Ülker received his Ph.D. in Sociology and Social Anthropology from the Central European University in 2012. He was a visiting scholar at the Humboldt University Berlin, Howard University, Washington DC, and Columbia University, New York, during his studies. Currently, he is a research fellow at the Center for Metropolitan Studies, Technical University Berlin, and the Head of the Research Institute at the Berlin International University of Applied Sciences. His major research interests focus on governmental subjectivities, the anthropology of state, colonial and postcolonial relations, and urban spatial restructuring.

María do Mar Castro Varela is a professor of Pedagogy and Social Work at the Alice Salomon University in Berlin and lectured amongst others at the University of Basel, the Zurich Academy of Arts and the University of Innsbruck. She holds a double degree in Psychology and Pedagogy and a Ph.D. in Political Science. Her research interests besides Postcolonial Theory lies in Gender and Queer Studies, Critical Migration Studies, Critical (Adult-)Education and Trauma Studies.


1) What will be the main challenge for your research field in the com­ing years?

Uneven distribution of wealth and resources, conflicts deriving from colonial and post-colonial constellations, racism, discrimination against migrants and social minorities, and unconstrained consumption culture continue to challenge societies all around the world more and more. Within this framework, one of the main goals in migration research and postcolonial studies is to explore the power relationships among different actors in different geographies. By looking at the convergences and divergences of various examples, one can develop an interdisciplinary scientific approach that can provide analysis going beyond binary oppositions and essentialized understandings.


2) Why would anyone want to pursue research in your field?

Migration research and postcolonial studies bring together extensive field work and archival work. In this way, it is interested in daily practices and narratives, as much as historical ruptures and continuities regarding social phenomena. The intersection of class, race and gender in different geographies is one of the most interesting and central aspects of research.


3) Why did you choose your research field? What motivates you in your field in particular?

Migration research and postcolonial studies still provide the ground to challenge the Nation-state based analysis and open up new dimensions and insights, since it is a very dynamic field. Therefore, it is full of new inspirations and difficulties, both of which enable the researcher to go beyond their comfort zones and look for new thinking strategies.


4) Which (academic) book has influenced you the most?

B.Ü.: Michel Foucault. The Hermeneutics of the Subject, Lectures at the College de France, 1981-82. Edited by Frederic Gros (Palgrave MacMillan, 2005).

M.C.V.: Gayatri Chakravorty Spivak. Outside in the Teaching Machine. (Routledge, 1993).


5) This is why we are authors with Barbara Budrich:

Barbara Budrich is open to communication, helpful to deal with different problems, flexible and trustful.


Order now via Budrich webshop:

3D Cover Castro VarelaMaría do Mar Castro Varela, Bariş Ülker (eds.): Doing Tolerance: Urban Interventions and Forms of Participation



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