Pál Nyíri

Senior Core Fellow
Period of Stay: 
October – December 2022
Vrije Universiteit, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Project Title: 
Migration and Values in Postwar Europe
Project Abstract: 

My earlier research on Chinese lifestyle migrants in Hungary, carried out jointly with CEU PhD student Fanni Beck, indicated that the Orbán government’s militant anti-immigration rhetoric, coupled with the selective liberalisation of immigration policies, actually attracted Chinese immigrants looking for a culturally and racially “pure” Europe. Since then, tightening authoritarianism in China and Russia has triggered a new exodus of the middle class from both countries. Both developments foreground the rather neglected question of values – as distinct from economic interest – as a driver of migration. I am interested in the way in which values, whether conservative or liberal, motivate middle-class lifestyle migration within and to Europe in the wake of the Ukraine war. In addition to developing a conceptual framework, I intend to conduct follow-up fieldwork on the way the Ukraine war has affected Chinese immigrants In Hungary and start baseline studies of Russian middle-class immigrants and Western European lifestyle migrants to rural Hungary.