Difference Between Diaspora and Migration

Key Difference – Diaspora vs Migration
 

Diaspora and migration are two words between which a key difference can be identified. First let us define these two words. Diaspora refers to a population that shares a common heritage who is scattered in different parts of the world. On the other hand, migration refers to people moving to different areas in search of a settlement. The key difference between Diaspora and migration is that in Diaspora the people maintain a very strong tie to their homeland, their roots, and their origin, unlike in migration. Through examples, let us examine the differences between these two words.

What is Diaspora?

Diaspora refers to a population that shares a common heritage who is scattered in different parts of the world. A special feature here is that these people try to keep in touch with their homeland. This can specifically be noticed in the 21st century where diasporas maintain political ties with their homeland. When speaking of diasporas, this has existed from the ancient days itself. For example, after the fall of Constantinople, it is believed that the Greeks fled. Another example for Diaspora is the Jews who were expelled from Judea.

According to William Safran, a diaspora can be easily identified based on some characteristics. One of the main characteristics is that the people have a collective memory of their home. In this sense, such a population considers the homeland as the true home. Also, the influence of the homeland is such that the individual’s identity is very much affected by the homeland. Those who belong to a diaspora can leave the country based on various political, economical and social factors.

Difference Between Diaspora and Migration

What is Migration?

Migration refers to people moving to different areas in search of a settlement. This can be due to social, environmental, political, or even economical reasons. For example, a person can migrate to another country for better employment opportunities or due to the unstable political condition of the country. This can be explained further. Today, many people of the third world are migrating to the West as it offers better living standards for the people.

Migration consists of various categories. One categorization is internal and international migration. Internal migration is when the individual moves to a different location of the same country. International migration is when the individual moves to another country. Another categorization is permanent and temporary migration. Unlike in temporary migration where the individual would return to the country one day, permanent migration is where the individual settles in another country with ho hopes of returning.

Key Difference - Diaspora vs Migration

What is the difference between Diaspora and Migration?

Definitions of Diaspora and Migration:

Diaspora: Diaspora refers to a population that shares a common heritage who is scattered in different parts of the world.

Migration: Migration refers to people moving to different areas in search of a settlement.

Characteristics of Diaspora and Migration:

Roots and Origin:

Diaspora: In the case of Diaspora, the people are very conscious of their roots and origin.

Migration: In migration, this feature cannot be seen.

Identity:

Diaspora: The homeland plays a key role in identity formation.

Migration: The homeland does not play a key role in identity formation.

Myth:

Diaspora: People maintain a myth of the homeland.

Migration: People do not maintain a myth of the homeland.

 

Image Courtesy:

1. “Emigrants Leave Ireland by Henry Doyle 1868” by Henry Edward Doyle – illustration from Preface to the First Edition of An Illustrated History of Ireland from AD 400 to 1800, by Mary Frances Cusack, Illustrated by Henry Doyle scanned into 001.jpg extracted from Gutenberg project’s zip file linked from [1]. First published in 1868.. [Public Domain] via Commons

2. “During World War I there was a great migration north by southern Negroes – NARA – 559091” by Jacob Lawrence, 1917-2000, Artist (NARA record: 1981548) – U.S. National Archives and Records Administration. [Public Domain] via Commons