“We need to convert a dread of the unfamiliar ‘Other’ into empathy, solidarity, and a democratizing desire for cultural difference.”

— Marcelo M. Suárez-Orozco, editor of
Humanitarianism and Mass Migration: Confronting the World Crisis

For International Migrants Day, we recommend books that share the stories of those who made the difficult decision to leave their families and homeland, undertake a perilous journey, and overcome adversity, all for a chance to live a better and safer life. And as a global community, we remember that at the heart of this concern are human beings who should be treated with respect and dignity. #WithDignity #InternationalMigrantsDay 

Humanitarianism and Mass Migration: Confronting the World Crisis edited by Marcelo M. Suárez-Orozco

This book could not be more important or more timely. Given the rampant tribalism that defines our time, Suárez-Orozco is wise to remind us that this is a fight against the culture of indifference.”—Kathleen McCartney, President, Smith College

And read more about children’s rights in the spirit of Human Rights Day.




Lives in Transit: Violence and Intimacy on the Migrant Journey by Wendy A. Vogt

“Invites us to witness the bodily and emotional trauma experienced by migrants and the care and intimacy enacted by unlikely characters in unexpected places. … This book leaves us heartened and haunted in a world increasingly touched by immigration and displacement.”—Seth Holmes, author of Fresh Fruit, Broken Bodies

Read more about the recent Central American asylum seekers.



Illegality, Inc.: Clandestine Migration and the Business of Bordering Europe by Ruben Andersson

“A must read. Focuses our attention on the ways in which ‘illegality’ is both discursively and practically brought into being, and the industry of prevention, control, and humanitarianism that has grown up around it.”—Katy Gardner, London School of Economics and Political Science

Read about how migration from Africa to Europe has become an industry, creating a number of risks for migrants and fueling the business of smuggling.



From a Trickle to a Torrent: Education, Migration, and Social Change in a Himalayan Valley of Nepal by Geoff Childs and Namgyal Choedup

“Drawing on over two decades of longitudinal research, From a Trickle to a Torrent demonstrates the power of a truly anthropological demography to explain the hidden causes and costs of human movement.”—Michael Lempert, author of Discipline and Debate: The Language of Violence in a Tibetan Buddhist Monastery