“We Are All Migrant Laborers”
DOI link for “We Are All Migrant Laborers”
“We Are All Migrant Laborers” book
This chapter concerns the question of history and neo-liberal democracy, taking Korean's border-crossing migration and migrant labor as examples. The inscription of migrant laborers as refugees or freedom seekers rather than as laborers is symptomatic of neo-liberal democracy. It focuses on North Koreans who came to China after the start of the severe food crisis in North Korea in 1995. The chapter discusses the marginalist universal politics in reference to migrant worker's politics in Canada and South Korea. It brings together the typically disconnected assessments of North Korea and North Korean migrants, arguing that the displacement of North Koreans into China and South Korea underpins capital accumulation in North Korea since the food crisis. Recognizing the history of transnational migration during the colonial era as the ur-history of Koreans enables one to understand the multiple temporalities of everyday experience of Korean Chinese that are suppressed by the current regime of capital and democracy.