Historical migration research is as complex as the history of migrations as such. Distinctions between ‘economic’ and ‘refugee migrations,’ between ‘subsistence migrations’ and ‘betterment migrations,’ or between ‘voluntary’ and ‘unintentional’ migrations remain superficial as long as we do not take sufficiently into account the fact that there are no clear boundries between motivations of migrants, patterns of migration, and migrant identities. There is, therefore, a multitude of approaches in historical migration research, including e.g. micro-historical, meso- and macro-historical approaches as well as multilevel migration theories, individual or group specific dimensions, and quantitative analyses of highly aggregated mass data. Given all the differences between past and present situations, outcomes of historical migration research in the sense of applied migration research may offer orientation guidelines in many fields: even for the evaluation and interpretation of migration and integration processes today and for their consequences for the economy, societies, and cultures in areas or countries of origin as well as in those of destination.
This article is in German / Dieser Artikel ist auf Deutsch.