The study of refugees by geographers and other social scientists is, almost by definition, framed around a series of legal categories, which provide us with more or less neat categories of types of involuntary migrants. Yet the process of migration emerges in relation to legal categories and is not simply dictated by them. Thus, as legislation on migration in general and the interpretation of the 1951 Geneva Convention in particular have become more restrictive, patterns of migration have increasingly emerged that manipulate, circumvent or simply break existing legislation.
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