Shamin Asghari (Leiden University): Agency and Afghan Migrants’ Legal Adaptation in Iran

Afternoon Talk on Islamic Law

  • *ABGESAGT*
  • Datum: 24.11.2022
  • Uhrzeit: 16:00
  • Ort: Online-Veranstaltung

Wir bedauern, Ihnen mitteilen zu müssen, dass dieser Workshop abgesagt wurde.


About the speaker
Shamin Asghari is an external PhD candidate at Van Vollenhoven Institute, Leiden University. She works on Afghan migrants’ adaptation and integration in Iran, a country with weak rule of law and decree-based governance of migration. She has obtained her LL.M. from Leiden University in International and European Human Rights Law and her bachelor’s degree of Law from Tehran University. Her LL.M. thesis was about early marriage in Iran. Shamin upholds a socio-legal approach in her studies and focuses on interactions between law on the book vs. law in practice.

About the topic
Governance of migration in Iran is complicated, hectic, and unpredictable. While multiple factors are influential in this matter, one critical factor is the weak rule of law in Iran. Iran’s governance of migration is primarily based on decrees made by officials. Written laws and regulations are scarce and everchanging. Moreover, multiple legal regimes, often working incoherently, can be detected. This characteristic is in contrast with the main purposes of rule of law, i.e. curbing arbitrary and inequitable use of state power and protecting citizens from each other. The purpose of this research is exploring how Afghan migrants have been adapting with this unpredictable legal environment in the past four decades. It will be argued that the key to Afghan migrants’ long-lasting presence in Iran is their agency, which has guided them through a pluralist legality towards legal adaptation. By navigating multiple legalities in governance of migration in Iran, inter alia written laws, decrees, and even alegality and illegality, Afghans have created their own experience-based knowledge of law which is circulated by word of mouth and updated as necessary. This research will study the role of agency and impact of legal pluralism in legal adaptation of Afghans from an empirical perspective, i.e. qualitative study of Afghans’ lived experiences in Iran.

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