Becoming-friend and the limits of care in refugee resettlement

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2 Citations (Scopus)


The resettlement of refugees catalyses complex geographies of care, friendship and community. LocalHouse is a non-government, volunteer-run organisation that is entangled deeply in these resettlement geographies. It offers what it describes as ‘friendship-based support’ to refugees arriving in Wattle City through Australia's formal humanitarian program. This paper seeks to understand the everyday geographies of care that emerge through the organisationally-mediated encounters between new arrivals and more settled city residents. I draw on Deleuze's and Guattari's analytics of ‘lines’—molar lines, molecular lines and lines of flight—to chart the delimited territories of care that are formed and unformed through LocalHouse's friendship-based programs. Developing detailed portraits of three LocalHouse volunteers, I chart the ways they articulated the ‘limits’ to care in their encounters with refugees. I suggest that a focus on the limits of care can shed light on the formation, contestation and transformation of the always-delimited subjectivities and territories that formal resettlement programs can catalyse. Where these limits lie is not predetermined, however, but rather always in the process of being immanently produced and, at times, exceeded and made again.

Original languageEnglish
Article number100733
Pages (from-to)1-7
Number of pages7
JournalEmotion, Space and Society
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2020


  • Assemblage
  • Care
  • Deleuze
  • Friendship
  • Refugee resettlement
  • Volunteering


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