Standard Article


Migration A–Z


  1. Dirk Hoerder

Published Online: 4 FEB 2013

DOI: 10.1002/9781444351071.wbeghm539

The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration

The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration

How to Cite

Hoerder, D. 2013. Transculturalism. The Encyclopedia of Global Human Migration. .

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 4 FEB 2013


Transcultural, as an integrative, overarching concept for the analysis of migration, comprises translocal, transregional, transnational, and trans-state approaches as well as geographic terminologies such as “transcontinental” and “transoceanic.” “Trans” refers to continuities across borders and to the permeability of borders and other dividing lines. In contrast, “inter” (as in “international”) or “multi” (as in “multiculturalism”) presupposes distinct entities in contact over demarcated and accepted boundaries. The “cultural” comprises the local, the regional, and the countrywide both in the institutional and legal aspects (state) and in the discursive aspects (nation) it extends to other, similarly diverse societies. It avoids an implicit assumption of “transnational” studies – that is, of a cultural and bordered nation incorporating common statewide populations with citizen status: Guatemalan refugees from among native peoples in the 1980s came from groups neither fully accepted into the nation nor provided with equal access to state resources.


  • cultural diversity;
  • cross-cultural;
  • ethnocentrism;
  • transnationalism;
  • globalization