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Arab Migrant Communities in the GCC$
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Zahra Babar

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780190608873

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2017

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780190608873.001.0001

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The Egyptian ‘Invasion’ of Kuwait

The Egyptian ‘Invasion’ of Kuwait

Navigating Possibilities among the Impossible

Chapter:
(p.85) 5 The Egyptian ‘Invasion’ of Kuwait
Source:
Arab Migrant Communities in the GCC
Author(s):

Abbie Taylor

Nada Soudy

Susan Martin

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/oso/9780190608873.003.0005

By virtue of their omnipresence and lived investment in the country, Egyptians are both heavily reliant upon and intrinsic to Kuwait, its citizenry, and its various forms of social, political, and economic production. In this chapter, drawing upon extensive interviews with Egyptians and Kuwaitis, we explore three main questions: How has Egyptian migration to Kuwait changed over time? In what ways do Egyptian migrants and their Kuwaiti hosts perceive and interact with one another against official ideology, and within the time limits placed on migrants’ lives in Kuwait? And what, if any, are the implications of political and socioeconomic instability in Egypt on the wellbeing and migration trajectories of Egyptian migrants in Kuwait? Implicit throughout the chapter is the framing paradox identified by Neha Vora in her study of the Indian diaspora in Dubai: namely, the ways in which Egyptians as impossible citizens suspended in a state of permanent temporariness experience, narrate and negotiate their existence in Kuwait. Lastly, we demonstrate ways in which Egyptians can and do navigate a degree of social and economic mobility in Kuwait, although these negotiations rarely succeed in extending or eroding the prejudices or existential time limits placed on their lives in Kuwait.

Keywords:   Kuwait, Egyptian migrants, Diaspora, Migration

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