Member Profile

Nursyazwani

PhD student, University of Pennsylvania

Contributor, Platypus: The CASTAC Blog

About Nursyazwani

Nursyazwani is interested in refugees’ everyday struggles to rethink new kinds of politics emerging from the global south. Her research interests revolve around questions of citizenship, violence, politics, refugee political subjectivity, and migration. She has been working with refugees, particularly Rohingya refugees, in Malaysia since 2017, and more recently, with resettled Rohingya refugees in Chicago. She received her M.Soc.Sci. from the Department of Sociology at the National University of Singapore, where her research focused on the co-construction of refugee legibility among Rohingya in Malaysia. Previously, she was a Research Associate at the Institute of Southeast Asian Studies in Singapore.

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Contributions to Platypus: The CASTAC Blog

View all of Nursyazwani's posts on Platypus: The CASTAC Blog.

“Legibility by Invitation”: Rohingya Refugees and the Struggle for Political Recognition

Once, in mid-August 2018 in a café tucked away in Klang Valley, Malaysia, Husin, my Rohingya research collaborator, and I sat with Fatimah, a young Rohingya woman. As it was after eight in the evening, I asked if she was worried that she might be detained by the police. “Ah Kak, that’s because the police just want money… if you know how to talk, you don’t have to pay bribe,” Fatimah explained to me in Malay before continuing, “kalau mereka mau tangkap saya, jemputlah [if they/police want to detain me, they are invited to do so]. Saya ada UN card, saya tak takut. [I have the UN card, I am not scared]” (emphasis mine). For Fatimah and other Rohingya refugees I have met in Malaysia, the notion of invite extends to their desire to be seen not just as refugees, but as Rohingya refugees. (more…)