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Interventions on the state of sovereignty at the border

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... Subsequently, my application of Agamben's theories embrace what new mobilities paradigm theorists describe as a mobile ontology, a sensitivity to the productive nature of mobilities (Adey, 2006: 78;Sheller, 2018: 9). It also brings Agamben's work into alignment with contemporary social scientific articulations of the fluidity of states and their borders (Agnew, 2005;Jones et al., 2017). ...
... In addition to highlighting the increasing role of (im)mobilities in state governmentality, research on state mobilities confounds Westphalian conceptions of sovereignty by demonstrating state action outside the geographical containers in which it is supposed to be confined (Jones et al., 2017;Bigo, 2007;Perera, 2009). Didier Bigo (2007: 5) for example conceptualises the modern state as a Möbius strip 'where the inside and outside are not delimited objectively as in a cylinder'. ...
... My analysis extends Agamben's paradigm of sovereignty by giving it a greater sensitivity to movement; seeing 'camps' and 'spaces of exception' not as sedentary, but as mobile processes underpinned by mobility-based dichotomies. Such a mobile form of sovereignty manages global mobilities by mapping political identities onto 'correct' mobility pathways and excluding 'incorrect' ones, producing the type of non-linear and global state borders that are increasingly the subject of geographical analysis (Jones et al., 2017). ...
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State sovereignty, in terms of the organisation and expression of political authority by nation states, is traditionally interpreted as a political container that is being weakened by increasing human and non-human mobilities. However recent research indicates that states are themselves becoming more mobile as executive bodies move and sovereign spaces are tactically reduced and expanded to intercept and control global mobilities. While challenging dichotomous notions of mobility and sovereignty, such research frames the movements of governments, territory and sovereign agents as the tactics of already established states. This paper builds on extant research by drawing on both a mobile ontology and Giorgio Agamben's theory of sovereignty to examine how mobilities constitute modern state sovereignty. To do so I examine Australian sovereignty and the related material and symbolic exclusion of asylum seekers arriving by boat. My analysis finds that mobilities, in terms of material movements and their representation, are essential to the construction of Australian sovereignty and the position of maritime asylum seekers as its outsider and limit identity. Through their mobile interception and management, and their representation as mobile ‘others’, maritime asylum seekers are used to create sovereign borders between specific types of movement; between ‘correct’ and ‘incorrect’ (im)mobilities. I argue that this form of state sovereignty is disarticulated from space and follows populations who construct territories as being ‘inside’ or ‘outside’ of the Australian state as they move.
... While research has been conducted on AI, smart borders and migration from a wide range of disciplines, it is the social scientific examination of this subject that is the focus of this chapter. This work has studied the social implications of the digitisation of bordering and migration, including how it has impacted the institutions of nation states (Jones et al., 2017), patterns of human mobility (Dekker, Engbersen, Klaver, & Vonk, 2018), and individual perceptions of selfhood (Elliott & Urry, 2010). Indeed, new subfields have developed around these topics, including 'digital migration studies' (Gough & Gough, 2019). ...
... This chapter focusses on five key features of the digitisation of borders and migration that have regularly come under social scientific examination. These are, one, that the digitisation of borders is causing their fracturing and disarticulation from space as they become embedded within flows of information in virtual networks and attached to the bodies of travellers biometrically tied to sovereign spaces and their outside (Broeders, 2007;Jones et al., 2017;Vukov & Sheller, 2013). Two, the technologies of modern borders produce generic digital subjects that are used to judge travellers in terms of their normativity (Haggerty & Ericson, 2000;Kafer, 2019). ...
... The movement, fracturing and disarticulation of digital borders Borders, particularly those surrounding sovereign nation-states, are traditionally framed as geographically defined and static (Everuss, 2020b). While the historical accuracy of this statement is debated, it is now evident that what stability and spatial fixity sovereign borders have is being reshaped by their digitisation (Broeders, 2007;Jones et al., 2017;Trauttmansdorff, 2017;Vukov & Sheller, 2013). For example, the infrastructure that creates digital border walls, such as ABC e-gates, are not wholly located at the boundaries of sovereign states or their ports and places of entry/exit. ...
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The integration of digital technologies into the processes of daily life has caused social interactions that were once based on physical information to become reliant on digitally stored and transmitted data. This chapter focuses on this technological/social transition, referred to as digitisation, in the context of migration and the crossing of borders between sovereign states. Drawing on extant social scientific analysis, I examine how digitisation is fracturing state boundaries and spreading bordering agencies across human-machine and machine-machine interactions. It is a process that involves, on the one hand, embedding state borders in virtual flows of information, and on the other hand, attaching them to the biometrically coded bodies of travellers. Additionally, this chapter will look at how digital technologies provide travellers with new tools to facilitate their migration projects, while at the same time altering the experience of travel, such as by displacing bordering labour onto travellers.
... Simultaneously, the number of border walls has increased, the number of people who have died while trying to cross the border has grown and border controls have become more militarised, ICT-driven and have relocated to also cover spaces outside the territory whose access they are supposed to regulate (R. Jones et al., 2017;R. Jones & Johnson, 2016;Vallet & David, 2012). ...
... Simultaneously, the transfer of border control to the supra-national level and to para-state institutions such as Frontex, in a context of increasing recognition that technological and physical border fortifications do not stop cross-border migrant flows but simply re-route them (R. Jones et al., 2017;Van Houtum, 2010), has become a divisive point in the European unification process and in inter-state relations. Within Europe, discussion about the responsibility for border enforcement is increasingly underpinned by larger questions of territorial sovereignty, cultural identity and institutional legitimacy in the multi-scalar European project. ...
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The currently globalising society is characterised by a tension between increasingly intensive transnational mobility of people and continuous territorial regulation of these flows. This situation has led to the increasingly selective opening and closing of borders, providing territorial access to some while keeping out others. In this paper, I reflect on how such management of people’s (in)ability to cross borders has become a geopolitical instrument. I particularly focus on how mobility inequalities are confirmed within the European Union (EU) to protect the geopolitical and political‐economic status quo of the EU itself, but also how this EU‐level process regarding people’s (im)mobility fuelled internal discussions regarding the relation between nation‐state sovereignty and EU‐level decision‐making. I first reflect on the citizenship of people and the Cultural Political Economy framework for explaining this (re‐)constructed selectivity of borders and border‐crossings. Subsequently, I apply these perspectives to the geopolitical construction of two types of border‐crossings in the EU, namely irregular(ised) migration and tourism, to reflect on how EU‐level and national actors selectively utilise structural‐institutional arrangements and semiotic strategies to position themselves within the European framework. By doing so, the paper illustrates the contradictions engrained in the neoliberal system along two lines: (1) generally, the continued territorial logic in the regulation of space in a world increasingly characterised by global economic and human flows, resulting in the blocking of the mobility of some while stimulating the mobility of others in what are supposedly ‘open’ economies; (2) specifically, the explicit (cf. irregular migration) and implicit (cf. tourism) competition between places as to what is the ‘right’, ‘legitimate’ or ‘sovereign’ spatial unit to regulate these flows, resulting in the mobilisation of competing political‐economic imaginaries to institutionalise one over the other.
... Critical border studies and political geography scholars have focused their analysis on the relationship between borders, territory (Parker and Vaughan-Williams, 2009), and sovereignty (Jones et al., 2017) and the dislocation and mobile nature of contemporary borders (Amilhat-Szary & Giraut, 2015;Burridge et al., 2017;Johnson et al., 2011;Parker & Vaughan-Williams, 2012). Populist border narratives are indeed not limited to the physical location of national boundaries; they may be more effectively explored with reference to the notion of "polymorphic" borders as a ubiquitous mode of governance (Burridge et al., 2017). ...
... The use of such border rhetoric (and the related policies against 'irregular' migrants) on the part of Salvini and other populist leaders has indeed been successful in terms of popular consensus despite the fact that the management of borders in Europe has radically changed in the past decades and is clearly not limited to traditional state territorial frontiers. As it has clearly been demonstrated by a rich body of work in critical border studies (see, among others, Burridge et al., 2017;Johnson et al., 2011;Jones et al., 2017;Vaughan-Williams, 2008, 2009, practices of bordering are implemented today potentially everywhere and on every body. Biopolitical technologies and new conceptualizations of spatial monitoring and control have radically transformed the ways in which borders and bordering are used by the authorities to operationalize their agendas. ...
Article
Research on populism is animating academic debate in light of the growing global relevance of populist parties and ideologies as well as of the recent events that have radically affected the conceptualization of the border, security, and politics nexus. Until recently, the contribution of political geography and border studies to the analysis of populism has been limited, although borders, sovereignty, globalization, and inequality are crucial elements mobilized by the current populist wave. In this contribution we seek to initiate an exploration of bordering processes and walling, both metaphorical and concrete, as central features of populist agendas in the European context and beyond. The interventions provide a dynamic picture of the spatialization of fear at a time when various successive “emergencies” – the rise of populism, the alleged closure of Mediterranean ports, Brexit, and Covid-19 – have pushed previous concerns into the background, with the result that the spatial aspects of identity, our relationship with the other, and the political articulation of threat are continuously re-elaborated.
... Када су границе у питању, поред пандемије, у задњих петнаест година поновно бујање интереса за њихово проучавање подстакнуто је милитаризмом, тероризмом, економским/ратним миграцијама и миграцијама повезаним са климатским променама (Dodds 2021;Jones, 2012;Jones, R. et al., 2017). ...
... When it comes to borders, and aside from the pandemic, the re-flourishing o interest in their study over the last fifteen years has been spurred by militarism, terrorism, economic/war migration and migration related to climate change (Dodds 2021;Jones, 2012;Jones, R. et al., 2017). ...
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U radu se teoretski razmatra transformacija razumevanja granica u okviru COVID-19 (post)pandemijskog konteksta. U prvom delu rada se analizira imunitarni diskurs kao nova forma upravljanja i interpretacije „koronokratske” države. U drugom delu se propituje prednost dinamičnog/kinetičkog u odnosu na statično tumačenje granica i značaj njihovih hibridnih i polimorfnih atributa u prelasku na postvestfalski međunarodni poredak. Na kraju se razmatraju implikacije pandemijskog metanarativa po kome se COVID-19 tretira kao dominantno spoljna pretnja, kao specifična vrsta neprijatelja. Konačno, rad se zaključuje identifikovanjem dvostrukog procesa u njihovoj percepciji. Taj proces, sa jedne strane obuhvata redukovanje kinetičkih potencijala granica, a sa druge njihovu eksternalizaciju na teritorije alohtonih/„trećih” zemalja.
... The concept of humanitarianism has been central to the study of morals in general and moral elements in the European governance of migration and refugees in particular (Fassin 2012a;Mavelli 2017;Pallister-Wilkins 2015;Walters 2011). The prevailing argument in this scholarship is the intertwinement of care and control logics underlying the management of refugee camps, borders and borderzones, and hotspots alongside the deployment of search-and-rescue operations (Cuttita 2018; Jones et al. 2017). Genealogically, humanitarian reason is said to be rooted in Christianity, especially in "the sacralization of life and the valorization of suffering" (Fassin 2012a, 248), which shows a "fascination with suffering" in the Christian tradition (Lester and Dussart 2014, 9). ...
... Our argument here is that looking at the variety of moral underpinnings of policies and practices on all sides of borders will be helpful in furthering the analysis of migration and border across sites. This can also be useful is the study of the uneasy relationship between state and non-state actors in humanitarian action, which has focused on politicization/depoliticization by Western actors (Cuttitta 2018;Jones et al. 2017). Karadağ's forum piece expands this field by bringing into focus the discursive battles by state actors on both sides of the EU border and showing how humanitarianism is tied to the notion of 'professionalism': drawing on interviews and participant observation in Greece and in Turkey, Karadağ shows how Greek and Turkish border officials seek to establish moral hierarchies not only vis-à-vis one another but also in relation to non-state organizations by reference to professionalism. ...
Article
This Forum aims to push existing debates in critical border and migration studies over the featuring of morals, ethics and rights in everyday practices relating to the governance of the mobility of non-citizen populations. Its contributors steer away from the actual evaluation or advocacy of the good/just/ethical, focusing instead on the sociological examination of morals and ethics in practice, i.e. how actors understand morally and ethically the border and migration policies they implement or resist. A proliferating interest in the discursive and non-discursive materialisation of moral and ethical elements in asylum and migration policies has examined the intertwinement of care and control logics underlying the management of refugee camps, borders and borderzones, and hotspots alongside the deployment of search-and-rescue operations. Nevertheless, recent research has shown the need to unpack narratives and actions displaying values and symbols that are not necessarily encompassed within this intertwinement of compassion and repression. We argue that there is a need to pay more attention to the diversity, plurality and the operation of morality, ethics and rights in settings and geographies, and of including a diversity of actors both across and beyond EUrope - please request full text if your institution does not provide access
... Later, we decided to research and analyze what positive or negative effects leaving the EU has on the economy of the United Kingdom. Jones, et al. stated that the Brexit vote in the United Kingdom that was fueled by a fear of migrants and a desire for more national control over economic decisions [2]. This part would explain briefly about the reasons behind Brexit from three aspects: immigration, sovereignty and currency effects. ...
... Les affects dans le régime migratoire de l'UE Les frontières de l'UE entre nécropolitique, mobilités illégales et contestations 7 Durant les dernières années, la notion de « crise des réfugiés » ou « crise migratoire » a été utilisée dans les discours dominants dans le but d'étiqueter les arrivées de migrants en UE à travers la mer Méditerranée comme un problème exogène à traiter, plutôt que comme une crise de gouvernance endogène (voire entre autres, Álvarez-Velasco, 2016, Beauchemin andIchou, 2016 ;Campesi, 2018 ;Casas-Cortes et al., 2015 ;Dines, Montagna, and Vacchelli, 2018 ;Jones et al., 2017 ;Pallister-Wilkins, 2016). ...
... Golunov (2013) states that the number of undocumented migrants has almost tripled in the decade following the act. The increasing securitization is spurring the tensions and (perception of) danger in the area as vigilant, aid, and nationalistic groups rally to the border (Squire 2014;Jones et al. 2017). The border is a desire to create a separation with what lies beyond it and, if the border becomes difficult to cross through increased securitization or/and militarization, it becomes more unclear what is on the other side. ...
Article
The mainstream paradigm of the US-Mexico borderlands is that the undocumented migrants are posing a serious threat to the area, yet who or what is actually in danger at the border and what is the danger? This paper explores, through a phenomenological participant-researcher approach, the tension and different perceptions of danger connected to the southern Arizona borderlands. By joining the humanitarian aid group Ajo Samaritans as a volunteer, the borderland is both experienced and observed on the ground through active participation. In closing, it is observed that different actors convey different, and at times even direct opposite, dangers that elevate tension in the area. Under the surface, however, there are similarities and while this study argues that there are many threats as well as endangered entities in the desert, the undocumented migrants are the group most threatened and the desert itself poses the greatest danger.
... Powerful destination countries, entangled in the globalised capitalist economy (Chalfin 2010;Ong 1999), negotiate their sovereignty by regulating the flow of migrants who constitute a disposable source of labour (De Genova 2004;Golash-Boza 2015). They also externalise their borders (Collyer 2007), as in the offshored refugee camps which represent loci of fragmented sovereignty and the negotiation of state power (Jones et al. 2017). ...
Article
Building upon an abundance of theoretical literature describing the role of deportation in the assertion of nation-state sovereignty, this article asks how deportees experience state sovereignty. Its conclusions are informed by an ‘ethnography of removal’ drawing on 62 interviews with 25 Mexican deportees interviewed in their communities of origin in Oaxaca after ‘3D’ (detection, detention and deportation) removal. Acknowledging deportation as an example of legal violence, the paper describes various other types of violence (physical, structural and symbolic; executed by state agents, private contractors, other deportees, criminal organisations, and communities of origin) that produce US sovereignty at the level of individual experience. ‘3D’ deportation causes suffering, embarrassment and fear. The paper shows how US borders are externalised on the micro and meso level without the involvement of state actors as deportees, invested with a new governmentality after being violently deported, exercise border controls over themselves and refrain from returning to the US.
... To regulate the international mobility of persons, technologies of sensing, sorting, identifying, informing, detaining, removing, persuading, hiding, and revealing are deployed by the European Union and its member states (Brown 2011;Dijstelbloem and Meijer 2011;Jones et al. 2017;Pallister-Wilkins 2016). Meanwhile, borders select and differentiate between different kinds of publics (Dijstelbloem and Broeders 2015), not only at the boundaries of states but also at Bordering a Hybrid World: Infrastructural Isolation and the Governance of Human and Nonhuman Mobility Global Perspectives numerous other places where authority, technology, and movement come together. ...
Article
The function of borders has changed. In addition to marking the boundaries of a territory and the sovereignty of nation-states, “bordering” has become an infrastructural project that is applied in various situations. This article looks into three situations of infrastructural bordering: namely, (1) externalization of border control, (2) disaster displacement, and (3) health security. These situations indicate that infrastructural bordering takes place in a hybrid world. As infrastructures, borders are intermingled with technologies of all sorts, varying from large databases and visual surveillance techniques to biometric applications and the creation of smart borders. These technologies affect the place of borders by placing them outward and inward of countries, as well as the temporalities of border control by connecting analyses of past and future movements to the present. Border infrastructures not only relate to technology but also connect to “nature” in specific ways—that is, to weather conditions, the environment, climate change, disasters, and viruses in the context of health security. The article suggests that in these situations, borders conduct acts of “infrastructural isolation” and “infrastructural circulation” that construct distinct but connected spheres that allow for the application of specific measures for movable configurations of humans and nonhumans. Bordering, in that sense, consists of a meticulous interplay between “circulation” and “isolation.” The article is part of the Global Perspectives, Media and Communication special issue on “Media, Migration, and Nationalism,” guest-edited by Koen Leurs and Tomohisa Hirata.
... That sovereignty is not something that is naturally given but needs to be claimed and enacted has not been lost on geopolitical scholarship. Jones et al. (2017) have examined the enactment of sovereignty at the border and see, for example, border fortifications as 'theatrical performances of nation-state sovereignty' (Brown, 2017, p. 3). Similarly, Jones and Johnson (2016, p. 197) observe that the ongoing militarization of borders 'represents a rearticulation of sovereign power' and the entrenchment of 'the idea' of territorial state sovereignty through violence. ...
Article
Migration is a policy area through which current nationalist governments enact territorial state sovereignty. This paper builds on Giorgio Agamben’s work to suggest that the liberal territorial state enacts itself as sovereign by claiming to be exempt from its own liberal principles. While enlightenment philosophies provide little guidance on the link between sovereignty, territory and migration, a materialist perspective offers valuable insights into how migration policy asserts sovereignty. Using the case of the United States, the paper illustrates how control over migration has always been important to enact this settler society as a sovereign state, and how migration policy has continued to maintain state sovereignty. The plenary power doctrine has facilitated this practice by permitting the state to disband the liberal domestic norms engrained in the US Constitution. Migration policies that blatantly violate liberal principles render the state sovereign by demonstrating its unaccountability.
... The border is further written upon our bodies: in the UK, a child may enter illegally at birth; the border made present in the maternity unit. The material body has also become written into the fabric of the border: biometric technologies have come to characterise contemporary bordering practices (Amoore, 2006) and there were at least 40,000 physical deaths at borders between 2006-2015 (Jones et al., 2017). ...
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Many accounts of resistance within systems of migration control pivot upon a coherent migrant subject, one that is imbued with political agency and posited as oppositional to particular forms of sovereign power. Drawing upon ethnographic research into the role of creativity within the UK asylum system, I argue that grounding resistance with a stable, coherent and agentic subject, aligns with oppositional narratives (of power vs resistance), and thereby risks negating the entangled politics of the (in)coherence of subject formation, and how this can contain the potential to disrupt, disturb or interrupt the practices and premise of the UK asylum system. I suggest that charity groups and subjects should not be written out of narratives of resistance apriori because they engage with ‘the state’: firstly, because to argue that there is a particular form that resistance should take is to place limits around what counts as the political; and secondly, because to ‘remain oppositional’ is at odds with an (in)coherent subject. I show how accounts which highlight a messy and ambiguous subjectivity, could be bought into understandings of resistance. This is important because as academics, we too participate in the delineation of the political and what counts as resistance. In predetermining what subjects, and forms of political action count as resistance we risk denying recognition to those within this system.
... One of the main reasons behind those policies is sovereignty, in which the influx of refugees will harm their culture, economy and social benefit of their local population (Young et al., 2018). In addition, many developed states tend to build a high wall and fences to prevent refugees from entering the countries, although those refugees are in the need to seek protection and safety from war and persecution in their countries (Jones et al., 2017). As a result, there are a lot of issues of violation of human rights as well as attacks on a civilian in the border territory (Hollenbach, 2016). ...
... Affects in the EU migration regime EU borders between necropolitics, illegalized mobilities and contestations 8 In recent years, the labels "refugee crisis" and "migration crisis" have been used in mainstream discourse to frame the arrival of migrants to the EU across the Mediterranean Sea as an exogenous problem to be managed rather than as an endogenous crisis of governance (see, among others, Álvarez-Velasco, 2016, Beauchemin andIchou, 2016;Campesi, 2018;Casas-Cortes et al., 2015;Dines, Montagna and Vacchelli, 2018;Jones et al., 2017;Pallister-Wilkins, 2016). 9 In this context, and especially since 2016, the route across the Col de l´Échelle has been increasingly transited by illegalized border-crossers. ...
... Within this context, some specific patterns are being generated within border regions (both EU and non-EU areas) considering that border effects create visible economic and social asymmetries that make the discrepancies between EU vs. non-EU regions more visible (Bureiko et al., 2021). Scholarship on development patterns of border regions highlights some particular associated challenges such as: lower accessibility and connectivity, institutional weaknesses, poor quality of social capital, etc. (Brown, 2017;Castanho et al., 2019). Additionally, political borders limit factors' mobility, increase transaction costs, reduce opportunities to diversify trade flows, amplify business risks, or limit the size of local markets (Geyer, 2006). ...
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The resilience approach as EU's newfound paradigm places societies and communities at the heart of its interactions with external partners, and especially with its immediate neighbours. As such, in order to enhance its resilience and that of its neighbours, the EU has turned its attention from state to society, from a general top-down to a bottom-up approach. The success of this approach depends, to a certain extent, on the local trust in the EU's performance as a transformative actor. The present paper inquires how EU's actorness is being perceived beyond its eastern borders (mainly in the border regions of Ukraine and Republic of Moldova) and explores the implications for building a more resilient society in the Eastern neighbourhood. We argue that in spite of the EU's attempts to enhance its actorness in the region, or its incentives to bring about reforms and promote European values, the positive citizens' perceptions and the overall awareness of the EU still has a modest impact; this is further limiting EU's capacity to act towards building a 'stronger and more resilient society'.
... Conventional political-geographic perspectives hold that territorialitythe management and control of spaceis a state strategy that can be turned on and off (Sack, 1986). There is no denying that territorial principles underlining the modern state system continue to dominate our understanding of borders, sovereignty, and territory itself (Agnew, 1994;Elden, 2010Elden, , 2013Johnson et al., 2011;Jones et al., 2017;Murphy, 2013;Paasi, 1996Paasi, , 2009Parker & Vaughan-Williams, 2009;Rumford, 2006;Stilz, 2019). At the same time, seminal works in political geography have demonstrated that territory is not exclusively a state phenomenon; that borders and bordering are not solely territorial phenomena; that borders may be porous, and that sovereignty may be practiced outside the purview of the state. ...
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In the modern state system, territories and borders give meaning to each other in the sense that borders delimit territorialized sovereign power. Conventional political-geographic perspectives hold that territoriality — the management and control of space — is a state strategy that can be turned on and off. There is no denying that territorial principles underlining the modern state system continue to dominate our understanding of borders, sovereignty, and territory itself. At the same time, seminal works in political geography have demonstrated that territory is not exclusively a state phenomenon; that borders and bordering are not solely territorial phenomena; that borders may be porous, and that sovereignty may be practiced outside the purview of the state. We situate the current intervention precisely at this intersection and, from varied perspectives, aim to answer: How do we locate and conceptualize territory and borders in a world characterized by conflicting, yet coexisting, phenomena of globalization, populist-nationalist movements, and de/re-territorialization?
... The 2016 launch of the Setting the Agenda section consolidated all non-full length articles under the journal's editorial guidance. This has allowed the journal to focus greater editorial attention on non-traditional publishing formats, such as Intervention collections, which have been essential for building bridges between political geography and, inter alia, mobility studies (Merriman et al., 2017), border studies (Johnson et al., 2011;Jones et al., 2017), and decolonial theory (Naylor et al., 2018). In 2020, the journal launched its Virtual Forum section, which features rolling series of short commentaries from researchers in multiple disciplines on specific contemporary topics, such as the COVID-19 pandemic, degrowth, exclusionary nationalism, and populist political ecologies. ...
... Conventional political-geographic perspectives hold that territorialitythe management and control of spaceis a state strategy that can be turned on and off (Sack, 1986). There is no denying that territorial principles underlining the modern state system continue to dominate our understanding of borders, sovereignty, and territory itself (Agnew, 1994;Elden, 2010Elden, , 2013Johnson et al., 2011;Jones et al., 2017;Murphy, 2013;Paasi, 1996Paasi, , 2009Parker & Vaughan-Williams, 2009;Rumford, 2006;Stilz, 2019). At the same time, seminal works in political geography have demonstrated that territory is not exclusively a state phenomenon; that borders and bordering are not solely territorial phenomena; that borders may be porous, and that sovereignty may be practiced outside the purview of the state. ...
... They create a spatial breach between rights, people and place, meaning that the freedom of movement is restricted based only on the fact that the asylum seekers in the hotspot islands entered Greece through the sea Greek-Turkish borders. The effects of the transformation of the European borders into spaces of humanitarian control (Jones et al. 2017;Pallister-Wilkins 2018) are well recorded concerning the ways mobility is controlled behind the facade of humanitarianism. The present legal analysis of the geographical restrictions contributes by further showing how the rule of law is bent and reinterpreted in different ways even at different border sites of the same country. ...
... These simultaneous practices intensify the vulnerability of migrant and refugee populations in contexts where social protection mechanisms are limited. Yet, despite the multiplicity of actors in these humanitarian contexts and the increasing privatisation of social assistance, it is the state that ultimately has the sovereign power of granting social and economic rights (Jones et al., 2017). ...
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The COVID-19 health crisis has put to the test Latin America’s already precarious social protection systems. This paper comparatively examines what type of social protection has been provided, by whom, and to what extent migrant and refugee populations have been included in these programmes in seven countries of the region during the COVID-19 pandemic, between March and December 2020. We develop a typology of models of social protection highlighting the assemblages of actors, different modes of protection and the emerging migrants’ subjectification in Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Mexico, Peru, and Uruguay in relation to Non-Contributory Social Transfer (NCST) programmes and other actions undertaken by state and non-state actors. The analysis is based on 85 semi-structured interviews with representatives of national and local governments, International Organisations, Civil Society Organisations, and migrant-led organisations across 16 cities, and a systematic review of regulatory frameworks in the country-case studies. The proposed typology shows broad heterogeneity and complexity regarding different degrees of inclusion of migrant and refugee populations, particularly in pre-existing and new NCST programmes. These actions are furthering notions of migrant protection that are contingent and crisis-driven, imposing temporal limitations that often selectively exclude migrants based on legal status. It also brings to the fore the path-dependent nature of policies and practices of exclusion/inclusion in the region, which impact on migrants’ effective access to social and economic rights, while shaping the broader dynamics of migration governance in the region.
... We also look to a rich literature in political geography on borders and boundaries that focuses on fences, walls and other infrastructural demarcations and their effects (Rosière & Jones, 2012;Newman & Paasi, 1998;Till et al., 2013;Johnson et al., 2011;Jones et al., 2017). 2 A key aspect of fencing is that the work of the state becomes visible, and potentially contested or a site for contest, 'Building a fence is one of the most visible measures possible, overtly signifying that something has been done' (Vallet, 2016, pp. ...
Article
This report focuses on the imaginaries and practices that demarcate space at the international and supranational scale. I will first review political geographic scholarship on region-making and regionalism, using the studies of Europe and the Belt and Road Initiative as examples, and I will then highlight some central themes in the current research on international borders. The report highlights the flexibility of bounding practices and the polymorphic character of borders. It underscores the resilience of state power and the transformations of sovereignty currently under way. It concludes by underscoring the interdisciplinary character of the relevant work.
Article
This essay questions the rise of border humanitarianism in the North-Eastern Moroccan borderlands. The increasing presence of humanitarian organizations in contexts marked by border violence has raised the attention of a number of critical migration scholars. Observers, however, have failed to problematize the presence of humanitarian activities, traditionally connected to emergency contexts, in sites integrated in the “routinary” regulation of mobility. Building on 8 months of fieldwork conducted in 2016 and 2017, the article addresses this gap, taking the working of border humanitarianism as a vantage point to reflect on the relation of borders to the exception, on the role of violence in border maintenance and, ultimately, on the politics of life and death at the frontier. Drawing on the work of Salter and Vaughan Williams on exceptionalism and biopolitics at the border, the article makes two points. First, I argue that the ordinary functioning of the Spanish–Moroccan border is founded on the bestialization and devaluation of Black lives, often to the point of death. Second, I contend that the integration of the “exception” in border normalcy activates, challenges, and endlessly reproduces the need for emergency interventions. In this dystopian framework, humanitarianism becomes a tool for the ordinary maintenance of migrants’ degraded life, transformed by the border into a less-than-citizen, less-than-human form of existence.
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Around Ceuta and Melilla, progressive Moroccan migration policies implemented since 2013 have not produced much positive change, as political, diplomatic and economic issues take over, producing a violent game of borders, both material and symbolic, racialised and gendered. Through an ethnographic approach, this article addresses the issue of violence experienced by migrants from Central and West Africa on the Moroccan–Spanish border, emanating from humanitarian and religious actors. Based on two and a half years of field research in Morocco (mainly in Rabat and in the North) and the Spanish enclaves of Ceuta and Melilla, with a special attention to embodied experiences of the border, this contribution shows that the humanitarianism practiced in a border town in Northern Morocco is also a space for updating relations of race and gender, which can, contrary to its claims, lead to even greater constraints on the mobility of people, notably women, being ‘helped’, and can reproduce a racialised and gendered order at the border. This contribution also proposes to reconnect this contemporary violence to history and underline the coloniality of such humanitarianism. (Full text available on request)
Article
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State sovereignty is customarily connected to the 1648 Peace of Westphalia, which it is argued established the ideal of political authority being tied to static geographical containers. While academic scholarship has demonstrated that this ideal fails to account for performative and fluid modes of political power, Westphalian sovereignty remains an influential feature of political discourse. This article argues that Westphalian sovereignty consequently fits Ulrich Beck’s description of a ‘zombie category’, a dead social institution kept alive in political and public discussion. This is demonstrated in the context of the Australian State’s exclusion of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples, as well as asylum seekers arriving by boat. Drawing on Giorgio Agamben’s theories of sovereignty, I contend that these populations are excluded from the Australian polity because of how they move, while other subjects including ‘genuine refugees’ and European settlers are included due to their ideal (im)mobilities. I argue that this underlying mobile logic of Australian sovereignty and exclusion is hidden by the zombie notion of a static Australian state, which delegitimatizes humanitarian and indigenous claims to sovereignty based on experiences of forced mobility and mobile expressions of political authority.
Book
Prominent in the EU’s recent transformations has been the tendency to advance extraordinary measures in the name of crisis response. From emergency lending to macro-economics, border management to Brexit, policies are pursued unconventionally and as measures of last resort. This book investigates the nature, rise, and implications of this politics of emergency as it appears in the transnational setting. As the author argues, recourse to this method of rule is an expression of the deeper weakness of executive power in today’s Europe. It is how policy-makers contend with rising socio-economic power and diminishing representative ties, seeking fall-back authority in the management of crises. In the structure of the EU they find incentives and few impediments. Whereas political exceptionalism tends to be associated with sovereign power, here it is power’s diffusion and functional disaggregation that spurs politics in the emergency mode. The effect of these governing patterns is not just to challenge and reshape ideas of EU legitimacy rooted in constitutionalism and technocracy. The politics of emergency fosters a counter-politics in its mirror image, as populists and others play with themes of necessity and claim the right to disobedience in extremis . The book examines the prospects for democracy once the politics of emergency takes hold, and what it might mean to put transnational politics on a different footing.
Article
This paper asks how people finance life when displaced, as a precursor to building pathways to more inclusive and sustainable prosperity on the move. The approach taken seeks to examine both lived experiences of displacement and the actors, institutions and technologies shaping those lives. The paper selectively reviews existing literatures to explore two key foci: (1) the role that various technologies play in financing movement and (2) the obligatory relationships through which people make life on the move. The argument is structured around a series of problemsolution dyads through which finance and technology are presumed to solve displacement’s problems: Governing displacement through outsourcing and offshoring; Governing the movement of money through legislation and data mining; Managing displaced people through financialization and techno-humanitarianism; Capitalizing (on) mobility networks through remittances and mobile money. The paper then examines potential methods for exploring these topics, before concluding with a set of key questions for future research.
Article
This paper, based on research conducted with asylum seekers in three European Union (EU) member-states, examines the connections among various forms of violence against forced migrants in different state settings. Because violence that is produced within states is not uniform and often transcends borders, understanding how it varies across different geographical settings illustrates the complexity of the risks that migrants face. This paper presents a typology that examines interconnections between the production of various forms of violence and the complex spaces that constitute irregular migration into the EU to better understand these multifaceted factors and why we can anticipate certain forms of violence in a particular space. It also fosters future avenues of research as it provides a foundation for greater collaboration and advocacy to expose and rectify hierarchical imbalances of power and actors responsible for such violence.
Article
Assisted Voluntary Return (AVR) programs occupy a central role in Europe's “management” of migration today. These state-funded programs allow migrants to meet with humanitarian counselors about the decision to return voluntarily, offering reintegration assistance and one-way travel booking to migrants' country of origin. This paper draws on interviews with practitioners at humanitarian organizations, those who counsel undocumented migrants and appeals rights exhausted asylum seekers about their decision to leave Europe via AVR, to consider the limits and potentials of humanitarian assistance for migrants in the EU's security-focused context. We query the degree to which care, as much as it is incorporated into regimes of bordering, can potentially disrupt hegemonic politics of assistance-as-governance. AVR provides a lens onto the politics of care and humanitarian assistance in migration management today, as migrants and practitioners negotiate together the decision to stay (with a limited range of legal options) or return via this increasingly relied upon policy.
Article
This paper is a historically informed comparative study of militarization and deportation efforts along the Western (Spain-Morocco) and Eastern (Greece-Turkey) Mediterranean migratory routes from 2005 to 2017. Based on extensive fieldwork on both sites, we argue that these two policy instruments go hand-in-hand in the construction of the European Union's anti-immigration border and examine the continu-ities in their implementation along the two extremes of the Mediterranean basin. Our findings indicate that the origins of current militarization and deportation efforts in the Eastern Mediterranean (such as the EUROSUR system and the 'Hot Spots' approach) can be traced back to the Western Mediterranean and that they have been gradually expanded eastwards. Finally, the paper also demonstrates how militarization and deportation initiatives were implemented jointly by sovereign entities (the EU and member states), and by doing so it addresses the recent debates on the status of sovereignty. We provide evidence to support the argument that, rather than disappearing , sovereignty is re-articulated through cooperation among sovereign entities , despite occasional disagreements among them.
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The article explores the border literature in political geography in order to understand the contemporary proliferation of bordering practices in the Western world. It takes the case of President Trump administration’s policies to show how borders can be concealed in social and political practices inside of sovereign territory. This expansion of geographical borders continually shapes the socio-spatial identities of migrants. The text also analyzes why the traditional bordering practice of building border walls is still an appealing resource aiming at keeping immigrants away from Western territories, even after the promise of a “borderless world” in the late 20th century. This article argues that the expansion of border walls is explained by the analysis of three factors: the transformations on the refugee protection framework after the 90s, the change in states’ perception of refugees as a threat to Western societies, and the fear of states to be perceived as actors non-capable to maintain their sovereignty. These contemporary practices are consistent with recent debates in border theory that see the border as a mobile entity instead of a static territorial line separating two units of land. This article aims at fostering the idea of border studies as a way to unveil new forms of power and control. It also pretends to foster an understanding of the interconnectedness of border practices around the world.
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Asylum seeking galvanises brutal state responses. The challenge of confronting the brutality of border security is understanding the elusive interlocking of knowledge and power that normalises technologies of securitisation, detention, and defiance of international conventions. In this paper we employ Marxist philosopher Ernest Bloch to interrogate the temporal horizon of border security discourse revealing the act of asylum seeking as a form of activism threatening breakthrough to an alternative future. In this analysis we expose discourses, such as Australia’s Operation Sovereign Borders, as formations marked by temporal closure as much as by a specific imbrication of knowledge and power. Drawing on nine vignettes, we discern opposing versions of hope as people seeking asylum, politicians, activists, practitioners, and Australian citizens are enrolled into the diffuse and multifaceted global response to asylum seeking. We demonstrate differing temporalities distinguishing and advocating the overwhelming vision of hope in the act of asylum seeking itself.
Article
Nationalist arguments justify contemporary border walls around the world. But what happens when nationalism defines the border as a dividing line and mandates its openness to link with ethnic kin beyond the state’s borders? In Hungary, Viktor Orbán’s government built an anti-immigration fence along the southern border, separating the country from a large Hungarian community in northern Serbia. To avoid the clash with Hungary’s transborder nationalism, Orbán advanced a new geopolitical storyline that explained the border/migration crisis of 2015 as a ‘Muslim invasion of Christian Europe’. The narrative shifted the border’s meaning from a dividing line of the transborder Hungarian nation to a defensive line and civilisational rampart of ‘Christian Europe’. This discursive-analytical study of Orbán’s geopolitical reasoning captures how the border’s meaning changed over several months. The paper represents a critical geopolitical contribution to the border studies literature.
Article
One of the reasons Rohingya refugees were saved from the sea in the Province of Aceh is based on humanity; nevertheless, the stakeholder management on the ground tends to ,dismiss the importance of the humanistic dimension. It includes challenges of the state in providing assistance, the limitation for resettlement, job opportunity prohibition, limited development of skills, and partnership challenges in the field. This paper addresses the practical implementation of managing refugees at the local level towards the six domains of the humanistic dimension through the Spider Web configuration. It allowed relevant stakeholders in the province to analyze their challenges, address their limitations and measure their practical action in locally managing Rohingya refugees. The result showed that the most important humanistic domain in managing refugees was a partnership with stakeholders followed by the resettlement process. At the same time, the region considered labor opportunity, not an important humanistic dimension. The paper further discussed the possibility of a partnership with non-state actors, particularly private sectors, to provide skills and training development and job opportunities for the future Rohingya self of reliance.
Article
This paper investigates the precarious lives of the Kurdish kolbers, underground laborers who transport cargo on their backs across Iran's border with Iraq. Throughout their arduous journeys, kolbers experience various forms of violence, including direct shooting by border guards. Findings from interviews with the kolbers indicate that kolberi, a strenuous, dangerous, precarious type of labor, is a response to pervasive unemployment in Iranian Kurdistan (Rojhelat), and a long-term consequence of the Iranian state's systematic economic disinvestment in the Kurdish region. Although kolbers assert agency within their labor at localized scales, the social organization of kolberi is a reaction to the Iranian state's biopolitical strategies of economic disinvestment and violence. Drawing on a biopolitical framework, we illustrate the analytical interconnections among the economic marginalization of Rojhelat, violence against the kolbers, and the kolbers' precarious lives. The article offers ideas for future research that come out of our examination of the complexities of kolberi—an examination that demonstrates the importance of incorporating political-economic, ethno-territorial, and biopolitical factors in analyses of underground border exchanges and precarious marginalized lives.
Research
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The migration flows that peaked during the 2015-2016 “refugee crisis” have had long-lasting effects to the countries of the European South. The latter have been deemed as border wardens of the European Union, filtering the “undesirables” who pose a threat to the European North, and by extension a proclaimed “Western way of life.” This project examines the living conditions of displaced persons and the systems of support in place for them in the European borderlands of Greece, with a case study of Crete. Starting from an archival ethnography and textual analysis of the “crisis” in an institutional archive, the ethnographic research focuses on the experiences of humanitarian workers and displaced persons on the island of Crete, where reception programs for asylum seekers and refugees run since 2017. Through in-depth ethnographic interviews with six (6) displaced persons and (24) humanitarian workers, the project analyzes the views, experiences, and strategies employed by humanitarian workers in protection and assistance programs for asylum seekers and refugees that dominate the Greek borderlands. Moreover, the focus on the constant categorization of beneficiaries by Greek and European authorities affects State policies and fieldwork daily, shaping the views of the displaced persons about themselves, their relationship to authorities, and the local community. The present research finds that in Greece the nature of services offered is temporary, without any policies for the future, even though participants acknowledge that migration flows towards Europe through Greece will only increase in the future.The lack of integration policies results in further reinforcing the role of Greece as a country-intermediary stop for displaced persons coming to Europe, offering few incentives for displaced persons to stay; in successful cases of integration, neighborhood communities have been critical in covering systemic deficiencies.
Article
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This article provides a re-conceptualization of human security by exploring humanitarian discourse in the EU periphery. It analyzes human security at the Mediterranean borders by focusing on humanitarian, migrant-centered discourse concerned with defending the world’s most vulnerable populations (Barnett in Annual Review of Political Science 16(1): 379-398, 2013). Empirical research has detected humanitarian discourse defending migrants’ rights, based on claims for the right to be free from inhuman treatment (Aradau in Millennium: Journal of International Studies 33(2): 251–77, 2004), as a counter-argument to the defense and closure of the borders. A humanitarian discourse focused on the alleviation of migrants’ physical and mental suffering erupted at the EU periphery when the Italian government denied a port of safety to the SeaWatch3 vessel in January 2019. This case study provides an example of center-periphery conflictual dynamics. The Italian government, defending the EU/Italian borders by closing the Italian ports, was challenged by actors mobilizing pressure, shaming the state into compliance and requesting pro-migrant legislation.
Article
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Borders remain vitally important features of our political world. Throughout the Global North, the common response to the broad challenges and the multiple overlapping crises has been to regress to state-centric thinking and nationalist agendas and revert to ad-hoc border closures. We have witnessed a consistent drive for ever stricter border and migration policies, which are not limited to the mere border management, but become an inherent part of a wide range of polices and societal practices. The premise assumed herein is that borders do not only divide physical space, but are also used increasingly to sort people according to the degree of their belonging. The question under scrutiny here is that how to balance the calls for the freedom of movement against the right to freedom of association? I seek to unravel this conundrum by addressing the arguments used to support these, which might appear as inherently, opposite stands. In advocating for unbounded inclusiveness, I seek to challenge the widely accepted notion that people are from a certain territorially demarcated place, and their rights, duties – and opportunities in life, ought to remain based on their arbitrary fact.
Article
Border walls are often seen as preferable options to improve security by providing strong barriers against the movement of people. Although these barriers are never absolute and remain porous, they are still appealing, which raises the question about who benefits when border walls are introduced. This article questions whether and for whom border walls work by focusing on the new Turkish-Syrian border wall in Hatay. Through an ethnographic investigation of border politics and the effects of increasing surveillance on residents of the border, it examines the socio-economic and political impact of the wall on local life. Second, it shows how the wall has led to a significant increase in migrant smuggling, which indicates improvements in security in one policy area may lead to a worsening situation in others. It concludes that the wall reinforces the state’s claim of sovereignty but fails to be an effective security measure for border residents or refugees.
Article
Based on a comparison between two intra-EU border securitization processes in the aftermath of the so-called EU “refugee crisis” of 2015, this article aims to contribute to literature on migration control by stressing the role that market-security dynamics play in state borderwork. The comparison between the French/Italian and the Austrian/Italian borders suggests that the containment of undesired mobility may be better understood in light of economic processes (shared commercial interests between states and the interests of the security industry) whose dimensions are easily quantifiable and comparable but rarely taken into account in research on borders and migration. The analysis highlights that these economic processes, together with other historical, political, social and geomorphological factors, are crucial to explain the emergence of different “local border control regimes” in terms of police cooperation, states’ sovereignty practices and the reconfiguration of migratory routes. As an additional argument, the article brings out the nuances of the EU’s uneven core-periphery dynamics with respect to migration management. Indeed, it shows the active role of peripheral countries, such as Italy, in negotiating, contesting, or actively assuming their role of migration “gatekeepers”.
Article
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By bringing together two sets of qualitative fieldwork conducted in 2016 and 2017 with humanitarian organizations and migrant women on the two sides of the Eastern Moroccan-Spanish border, this article examines the ways in which women humanitarians exercise power over women’s lives, bodies and mobility. Though humanitarianism in the border context has been researched at European and United States-Mexico borders, the specifically gendered implications of humanitarian governance at borders needs further investigation. Drawing on interviews and participant observation with a religious humanitarian organization on the Moroccan side of the border and with medical humanitarians and social workers on the Spanish side, we researched women humanitarians’ interventions toward migrant women from West African, North African and Middle Eastern countries. Beyond the differences that characterize these religious and socio-medical humanitarian settings and the different migration regimes in which they are inscribed, we argue that the power exerted by women humanitarians reproduces a form of maternalism underpinned by gendered moral beliefs regarding women’s bodies, mobility and family life. We foreground that such maternalism represents a cornerstone of women’s humanitarian engagement across time and we identify continuities between colonial maternalism, contemporary forms of humanitarian care carried out by women and maternalist integration politics in Western postcolonial societies. Rooted in colonial maternalism, racialized beliefs justified women’s (religious, medical, social) prominent role in intervening in the intimate spaces of women casted as radically Other. Our contemporary case studies demonstrate how the practices of women humanitarians impact on racialized migrant women’s daily lives, intruding on their intimacy, imposing controls over their bodies and impacting on their possibilities for mobility. The article explores how the racialization of migrant women, articulated with moral ideas around women’s reproductive health and mothering responsibilities, produce varied forms of disciplining and control on both sides of the border Moroccan-Spanish border.
Article
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This article brings insights from Critical Border Studies (CBS) to bear on the diverse and proliferating borderings that have characterised the EU’s migration crisis. It harnesses the broad ontological and empirical scope of ‘Borderscapes’ scholarship to make coherent sense of seemingly disparate, plural borderings without eliding their diversity or particularity. It conceptualises the ‘borderscape’ as being constituted by ‘related arrays’ of bordering features, discourses and practices. This analytical framework is complemented by an interpretive framework that distinguishes the borderscape from other sociopolitical phenomena while contextualising it in relation to wider political concerns. The conceptualisation encourages nuanced yet cogent analysis of proliferating (in)securities, (im)mobilities and borderings, as well as their political implications: for identity, subjectivity, order and governance. The article thus offers a way to make sense of diverse manifestations, representations and analyses and of Europe’s migration crisis—and provides a tool for making policy recommendations to address their negative consequences.
Article
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This article explores the experience of migrants at Europe’s borders and beyond building upon the notion of human security—or rather its antithesis insecurity—and looking at it afresh through the lenses of border studies. It introduces the concept of ‘human insecurity trap’ as a tool to grasp the insecurities and vulnerabilities of people-on-the-move and the different border(ing)s, barriers and confinements they stem from. The article argues that smuggling to and across Europe, as well as EU and MS policy apparatus, entraps migrants into a spiral of human insecurity which unfolds at different levels and borders: at sea, in the ongoing struggle between smugglers and EU counter-smuggling operations; at the state border, where bureaucratic limbo and the (mis)management of shipwrecked migrants and asylum-seekers variously contend and combine with populist anti-migrant discourse; and across the EU, as practices of ‘re-smuggling’ and ‘secondary movement’ compete with practices of mobility limits, returns and border closures.
Thesis
Black African women exert agency during, after and before migration amidst an atmosphere of vulnerability, violence and victimization. An understudied category in migration, gender significantly impacts every aspect of the migratory experience. In my dissertation, I explore the effect Spanish borders and Senegalese gendered expectations have on Senegalese women’s migration through a corpus of African and European cultural production (1990-2020). Using Balibar’s work on borders as a starting point, I map the Senegalese-Spanish borderspace as the liminal geographical territory for Senegalese and Sub-Saharan African migration to Spain. Relying on Senegalese Gender Theory (Fatou Sarr Sow, Awa Thiam and others) and informed by Ayo Coly’s work on postcolonial gender issues, I argue that migrant women are susceptible to violence because of their position in Senegalese society prior to migration. Through Mahler and Pessar’s approach to women and gender in migration and Elsa Tyszler’s understanding of heightened femininities and masculinities, I examine how gendered cultural expectations persist and are exacerbated in the crossing by male migrants, non-migrants, and border and local police. I scrutinize the gender-related challenges and achievements of Senegalese women in Sub-Saharan Africa, North Africa and Spain during land, sea, and air migration by analyzing Senegalese women protagonists in Frontières (2002), La Pirogue (2012), and Des Étoiles (2013). I advocate for a more agentic understanding of Senegalese women migrants through a more agentic reading of Senegalese women migrant characters. Utilizing the films Atlantics (2019) and Biutiful (2010), I investigate the disruption and reconstruction of home for the Senegalese women “who remain” in Senegal or Spain when Spanish borders separate them from their romantic partners. I examine the challenges of immigrant motherhood, specifically how through their motherhood status Spain simultaneously offers home to immigrant women and locks them into certain roles. Through this work I push forward the gendered impact of the Spanish border on Senegalese women im/migrants and non-migrants.
Article
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Brexit has opened doors for renewed attention to contested, multi-scalar geopolitical forces grounded in everyday life in bor-derlands. In this paper, we aim to unravel 'everyday Brexits' in the Gibraltar-La Línea (Spain) borderlands. By studying the 2019 commemoration of the historic 1969 border closure, we concentrate on how local borderwork by residents is mobilised for bottom-up geopolitics in the context of Brexit negotiations. We use a conceptual approach that focuses on multiple layerings of the border and the selectivity of stakeholders to select among these layers to pursue their interests. Based on on-site observations , in-depth interviews, and informal conversations with residents and key actors of La Línea and Gibraltar, we argue that Brexit has increased the tension of already loaded core-periphery relations in Spain. Brexit does not represent a sudden disruption. Rather, we show how Brexit allowed the bottom-up geopolitical mobilisation of latent, strongly historically embedded and continuous cross-borders sentiments of residents. This mobilisation could potentially challenge local cross-border power relations. In the final analysis, we conclude that the bottom-up geopolitics of 'ordinary' residents through everyday bordering processes is central to geopolitics research, including with regard to Brexit and in particular for non-British geographies affected by Brexit.
Article
Border studies have become increasingly global over the past two decades. Yet, a network analysis of the articles published in the Journal of Borderlands Studies from 1986 to 2018 shows that less than half of them have one or more coauthors. Unlike in other scientific disciplines, where a growth of co-publications is observed, this proportion has not really changed over the last decade. Our paper also shows that major divisions can be found within border studies, which is no small paradox for a science supposedly cross-border by nature. Despite the overall global increase in scientific connectivity, internationally co-authored papers are still an exception in our field and scholars have a strong preference for publishing within their own country. Instead of a fully integrated community, they form a fragmented network whose main components are mainly located in the United States. Interviews with border experts reveal that various obstacles contribute to the current fragmentation of border studies. In addition to being separated by geographical distance and, sometimes, by actual walls, border scholars must also able to overcome the cognitive, social, organizational, and institutional distance that separate them.
Chapter
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After a long period of oblivion that lasted for much of the second half of the 20th century, border studies over the past 20 years have once again become a fertile topic of discussion and debate, as national and international politics have brought them to the forefront of our news media. While knowledge about borders is growing steadily, their constant evolution invites scholars and practitioners alike to continue to revise ideas about what they represent for us and what they do to our lives. Following historical attempts to draw a universal understanding of the international border (Ancel, 1938; Foucher, 1986; Guichonnet & Raffestin, 1974; Martinez, 1994; Prescott, 1978), the focus has been on border dynamics, essentially that of debordering and rebordering (Amilhat Szary & Fourny, 2006; Kaplan & Häkli, 2002; Newman & Paasi, 1998; Popescu, 2011). However, the multiplication of borders seems to induce a shift from fixity to multi-location (Balibar, 2009; Squire, 2011; Vaughan-Williams, 2008). Through these processes, what appeared to be a linear divide loses its traditional topography, symbolic power and function as it disseminates in a reticular and relational manner that is always renegotiated in a way that could lead us to envision the border as ‘mobile’. We have been calling for a research agenda on the mobile border since one of our research projects bore this expression in its title in 2008, which was soon followed by preparations for an important international conference, the XIth meeting of the ‘Border Regions in Transition’ (BRIT) network (Amilhat Szary & Giraut, 2011).
Article
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This paper identifies a global trend towards hardened, militarised borders through the use of military technologies, hardware and personnel. In contrast to claims of waning state sovereignty, drawing on detailed case studies from the United States and European Union, we argue the militarisation of borders represents a re-articulation and expansion of state sovereignty into new spaces and arenas. We argue that the nexus of military-security contractors, dramatically increased security budgets, and the discourse of threats from terrorism and immigration is resulting in a profound shift in border security. The construction of barriers, deployment of more personnel and the investment in a wide range of military and security technologies from drones to smart border technologies that attempt to monitor, identify and prevent unauthorised movements are emblematic of this shift. We link this increasing militarisation to dehumanisation of migrant others and to the increasing mortality in border spaces. By documenting this trend and identifying a range of different practices that are included under the rubric of militarisation, this paper is both a call for nuanced interpretation and more sustained investigation of the expansion of the military into the policing of borders.
Thesis
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This thesis makes a contribution to the field of border studies through a detailed analysis of one form of contemporary bordering: alternatives to immigration detention. The dissertation establishes the nature and extent of alternatives to detention and uses these findings to engage with debates regarding the role of expert knowledge in policy making processes and the nature of the exception in the governance of borders. The thesis makes three main contributions to the field. Firstly, I undertook an international study of alternatives to detention, including in-depth field work in eight countries, in collaboration with the International Detention Coalition. I used this data to develop a new model on alternatives to detention called the Community Assessment and Placement model (“CAP model”). The CAP model has been presented to over 50 governments since publication in 2011. This provided the basis to analyse the contexts and mechanisms by which research contributes to the development of policy. While my work largely confirms the explanations offered by the theories of knowledge mobilisation and diffusion of innovations, I argue that the use of research for ‘enlightenment’ (or ‘galvanisation’) has been underestimated as an important precursor to substantive change in the area of migration policy. Finally, I engage with theories of exception to propose a new concept – embodied borders – to encapsulate the (re)location and (re)negotiation of state borders at the site of the migrant body. I argue bordering policies, while exclusionary, do not result in a homogenous form of exception produced by sovereign authority alone. Rather, bordering involves dynamic and responsive forms of differentiation being lawfully produced and enacted in specific contexts by multiple actors. The exceptional nature of contemporary borders is thus both confirmed and renegotiated to account for alternatives to detention that blend exclusionary and inclusionary mechanisms according to the individual and their case.
Article
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Contemporary usage presents an opposition between states and terrorism, as if to suggest that terrorism is not an instrument of the state but something that is used against it. Yet the two most influential foundational myths of the modern states system suggest that the state's capacity for terror is the source of peace and order within the territorial community. It also makes other states think twice about attacking its territory. The author examines the ramifications of these myths and shows how they underlie conventional accounts of what is at stake in the war on terror.
Article
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About the book: This important collection examines deportation as an increasingly global mechanism of state control. Anthropologists, historians, legal scholars, and sociologists consider not only the physical expulsion of noncitizens, but also the social discipline and labour subordination resulting from deportability, the threat of forced removal. They explore practices and experiences of deportation in regional and national settings from the U.S.-Mexico border to Israel, and from Somalia to Switzerland. They also address broader questions, including the ontological significance of freedom of movement; the historical antecedents of deportation, such as banishment and exile; and the development, entrenchment, and consequences of organizing sovereign power and framing individual rights by territory. Whether investigating the power that individual and corporate sponsors have over the fate of foreign labourers in Bahrain, the implications of Germany's temporary suspension of deportation orders for pregnant and ill migrants, or the significance of the detention camp, the contributors reveal how deportation reflects and reproduces notions about public health, racial purity, and class privilege. They also provide insight into how deportation and deportability are experienced by individuals, including Arabs, South Asians, and Muslims in the United States. One contributor looks at asylum claims in light of an unusual anti-deportation campaign mounted by Algerian refugees in Montreal; others analyze the European Union as an entity specifically dedicated to governing mobility inside and across its official borders. Addressing urgent issues related to human rights, international migration, and the extensive security measures implemented by nation-states since September 11, 2001, "The Deportation Regime" is a call for more attention to the sociopolitical logic and far-reaching effects of deportation, and to the way it is increasingly seen as a natural response by nation-states to the presence of unauthorized foreign migrants.
Book
International migration has been described as one of the defining issues of the twenty-first century. While a lot is known about the complex nature of migratory flows, surprisingly little attention has been given to one of the most prominent responses by governments to human mobility: the practice of immigration detention. Intimate Economies of Immigration Detention provides a timely intervention, offering much needed scrutiny of the ideologies, policies and practices that enable the troubling, unparalleled and seemingly unbridled growth of immigration detention around the world. An international collection of scholars provide crucial new insights into immigration detention recounting at close range how detention’s effects ricochet from personal and everyday experiences to broader political-economic, social and cultural spheres. Contributors draw on original research in the US, Australia, Europe, and beyond to scrutinise the increasingly tangled relations associated with detention operation and migration management. With new theoretical and empirical perspectives on detention, the chapters collectively present a toolbox for better understanding the forces behind and broader implications of the seemingly uncontested rise of immigration detention. This book is of great interest to those who study political economy, economic geography and immigration policy, as well as policy makers interested in immigration.
Article
In April 2015, former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott called on European leaders to respond to the migration and refugee crisis in the Mediterranean by ‘stopping the boats’ in order to prevent further deaths. This suggestion resonated with the European Union Commission’s newly articulated commitment to both enhancing border security and saving lives. This article charts the increasing entanglement of securitisation and humanitarianism in the context of transnational border control and migration management. The analysis traces the global phenomenon of humanitarian border security alongside a series of spatial dislocations and temporal deferrals of ‘the border’ in both European and Australian contexts. While discourses of humanitarian borders operate according to a purportedly universal and therefore borderless logic of ‘saving lives’, the subjectivity of the ‘irregular’ migrant in need of rescue is one that is produced as spatially and temporally exceptional — the imperative is always to act in the here and the now — and therefore knowable, governable and ‘bordered’.
Article
This special issue of Refugee Survey Quarterly presents the experiences of front-line staff in Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) as they grapple with the implications of the global refugee crisis. Over the past 18 months, hundreds of thousands of people have moved from Africa and the Middle East to Europe, generating widespread media attention and considerable political wrangling. But for aid workers, this situation raises questions that get to the very heart of humanitarianism and its purpose in the contemporary world. How does an organisation like MSF, the pioneer of “sans-frontierism”, engage with the shifting politics of borders and migration? What, practically, does it mean to be a “borderless” organisation in a world where migration controls are such a big political issue? What are the implications of the refugee crisis for humanitarian principles and medical care? This introduction to the special issue brings some humanitarian dilemmas into focus, arguing that, in reaction to the migration crisis, aid agencies may have no option but to take a more robustly political approach.
Article
This article explores the debates that unfolded within Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) around the decision to launch search and rescue operations in the Mediterranean in 2015. It examines how, beyond the unifying imperative to help, there remained very different political interpretations within the organisation about the proper role of humanitarian actors in tackling this visible and tragic situation. The points of contention included categorisation, feasibility, medical impact, and politics, raising the following central questions: should categories matter, and is it relevant whether a needy person is classed as a camp-dwelling refugee or an irregular migrant at sea? Are the needs in the Mediterranean more serious than those in disasters elsewhere? Would search and rescue operations end up placing publicity and politics over impartiality and neutrality? Looking at how MSF resolved these and other issues can help illustrate the challenges aid agencies face in a world where deaths from large-scale migration are becoming a more common feature of the humanitarian landscape.
Article
To travel undetected by state authorities and criminal predators, Central Americans pass as Mexican during their journey to the United States. This ‘passing’ underscores the ambiguities of social roles, such as nationality. Over time, these performances partially reconstruct imagined communities, blurring the boundaries between foreigners and citizens. However, international-relations scholarship tends to overlook how uncoordinated everyday practice complicates borders in a globalized world. By tracing the co-constitutive relationship between migration policing, national performances, and transnational routes, this article reveals the makeshift nature of the identities that underscore distinctions between citizens and foreigners. I argue for the continued inclusion of ethnography as a method for exploring the dynamic relationship between territory, state, and nation. Migrants complicate borders, but also suffer the very real, material consequences of both state and nonstate violence. My analysis of clandestine transnationalism therefore chronicles challenges to, and reconfigurations of, sovereignty.
Book
Adopting new and much more comprehensive concepts of both power and politics, the author develops a theoretical framework to show who really governs the world economy. He goes on to explore some of the non-state authorities, from mafias to the 'Big Six' accounting firms and international bureaucrats, whose power over who gets what in the world encroaches on that of national governments. The book is a signpost, pointing to some promising new directions for the future development of research and teaching in international political economy.
Article
Liberating Temporariness? explores the complex ways in which temporariness is being institutionalized as a condition of life for a growing number of people worldwide. The collection emphasizes contemporary developments, but also provides historical context on nation-state membership as the fundamental means for accessing rights in an era of expanding temporariness - in recognition of why pathways to permanence remain so compelling. Through empirical and theoretical analysis, contributors explore various dimensions of temporariness, especially as it relates to the legal status of migrants and refugees, to the spread of precarious employment, and to limitations on social rights. While the focus is on Canada, a number of chapters investigate and contrast developments in Canada with those in Europe as well as Australia and the United States. Together, these essays reveal changing and enduring temporariness at local, regional, national, transnational, and global levels, and in different domains, such as health care, language programs, and security. The question at the heart of this collection is whether temporariness can be liberated from current constraints. While not denying the desirability of permanence for migrants and labourers, Liberating Temporariness? presents alternative possibilities of security and liberation.
Article
A Search for Sovereignty Law and Geography in European Empires, 1400–1900 A Search for Sovereignty maps a new approach to world history by examining the relation of law and geography in European empires between 1400 and 1900. Lauren Benton argues that Europeans imagined imperial space as networks of corridors and enclaves, and that they constructed sovereignty in ways that merged ideas about geography and law. Conflicts over treason, piracy, convict transportation, martial law, and crime created irregular spaces of law, while also attaching legal meanings to familiar geographic categories such as rivers, oceans, islands, and mountains. The resulting legal and spatial anomalies influenced debates about imperial constitutions and international law both in the colonies and at home. This original study changes our understanding of empire and its legacies and opens new perspectives on the global history of law.
Article
This paper scrutinizes the interrelation between technology and processes of bordering. In particular, it addresses the ways through which biometrics, dataveillance, predictive analytics, and robotics enlist the human body, networks, and human-machine assemblages in practices of inclusion and exclusion at the contemporary dislocated and 'smart' border. Through a description of the sociotechnical apparatuses underlying biometric, algorithmic, and automated border work, the paper develops the term iBorder, and connects its specific affordances to an emergent late-modern regime of security. With reference to the notion of cultural technique, the paper argues that contemporary technologically facilitated practices of bordering coconstitute, rather than merely process, contingent subjectivities and frames for practice.
Article
The article critically examines the peculiar co-existence of the securitization of the border and the growing presence and prominence of human rights and humanitarian ideals in border policing practices. Concretely, it focuses on Frontex, the agency tasked with management of EU’s external borders. Based on interviews with Frontex officials and border guard officers, and on the analysis of relevant policy documents and official reports, the article explores what may come across as a discrepancy between the organization’s activities and its public self-presentation. The objective is to provide an insight into the complex and volatile relationship between policing and human rights, which marks contemporary migration control as well as mundane forms of professional and personal self-understanding.
Article
The duty to render assistance at sea appears to be a well-established humanitarian norm, nonetheless in 2011 alone more than 1500 people drowned in the Mediterranean. Witnesses recount that many could have been rescued if fellow seafarers had not ignored their pleas for help. Struggling to understand failures to rescue, many seek to portray indifference as individual failure from the norm. In contrast hereto, this article provides an insight into the governing of indifference in contemporary liberal societies - that is, how people are guided towards becoming indifferent to the lives and sufferings of particular populations. Thus, my focus will be on the workings of law and its potential to produce collective indifference. The drowned, I argue, are not casualties of individual immoral behaviour; through a system of sanctions, fellow human beings are encouraged to look away and even to let people die at borders in the name of security. This not only dilutes the legal duty to rescue but has also had a detrimental impact upon the normative landscape, leading to a distinction between worthy lives that fall within the duty to rescue and charitable lives becoming a question of benevolence.
Article
This paper explores humanitarianism in the practice of Frontex-assisted Greek border police in Evros and of Frontex at their headquarters in Warsaw. Building on the increase in humanitarian justifications for border policing practices as well as the charges of a lack of humanity, the paper analyzes the relations between humanitarian responses and border policing where humanitarianism is used for framing and giving meaning to institutional and operational practices. In offering an interpretive view of border policing undertaken by people in their working lives across sites and scales, it builds on the critical literature addressing the multifaceted nature of border control in Europe today. At the same time, it speaks to wider debates about the double-sided nature of humanitarian governance concerned with care and control. It argues that while humanitarian motivations have implications for operations in the field and help to frame “good practice” at the policy level, humanitarianism should not be seen as additional or paradoxical to wider border policing operations within forms of governance developed to address the problems of population. Conflict arises in the paradox of protection between the subject of humanitarianism and policing, the population, and the object of border control, the territorially bounded state or regional unit.
Article
Throughout the world, increasingly securitized and militarized border enforcement efforts have made transnational migration an increasingly deadly endeavor for unauthorized migrants. The deadly consequences of unauthorized migration has compelled the emergence of what William Walters refers to as the humanitarian border—the concentration of humanitarian aid and services along the edges of the global North. This paper expands on Walters work through an in-depth analysis of the emergence and transformation of the humanitarian border in southern Arizona, USA. Through an examination of transformations in how migrant care is provisioned, overseen, and regulated in southern Arizona, this paper traces a shift from humanitarian exceptionalism to contingent care whereby care is increasingly linked with enforcement efforts. In doing so, this analysis illustrates how care functions as a technology of border enforcement, increasing the reach of the state to govern more bodies and more spaces.
Book
Twenty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, the question remains ‘Do good fences still make good neighbours’? Since the Great Wall of China, the Antonine Wall, built in Scotland to support Hadrian's Wall, the Roman ‘Limes’ or the Danevirk fence, the ‘wall’ has been a constant in the protection of defined entities claiming sovereignty, East and West. But is the wall more than an historical relict for the management of borders? In recent years, the wall has been given renewed vigour in North America, particularly along the U.S.-Mexico border, and in Israel-Palestine. But the success of these new walls in the development of friendly and orderly relations between nations (or indeed, within nations) remains unclear. What role does the wall play in the development of security and insecurity? Do walls contribute to a sense of insecurity as much as they assuage fears and create a sense of security for those 'behind the line'? Exactly what kind of security is associated with border walls? This book explores the issue of how the return of the border fences and walls as a political tool may be symptomatic of a new era in border studies and international relations. Taking a multidisciplinary approach, this volume examines problems that include security issues ; the recurrence and/or decline of the wall; wall discourses ; legal approaches to the wall; the ‘wall industry’ and border technology as well as their symbolism, role, objectives and efficiency. Contents: Introduction, Elisabeth Vallet. Part I Insecurity and Borders in Europe and North America: The Mediterranean Sea as a European border: trans-Mediterranean migration, forced return and violation of fundamental rights, Maria Chiara Locchi; The Canary Islands' ‘maritime wall’: migration pressure, security measures and economic crisis in the mid-Atlantic, Josefina Domínguez-Mujica, Ramón Díaz-Hernández and Juan Parreno-Castellano; A community of borders, borders of the community: the EU’s Integrated Border Management Strategy, Denis Duez; Border games: from duel to Russian Roulette at the border, Markus Heiskanen; Borders, bordered lands and borderlands: geographical states of insecurity between Canada and the United States and the impacts of security primacy, Victor Konrad. Part II Towards a Theory of Border Walls?: Walls and borders in a globalized world: the paradoxical revenge of territorialization, Jean-Jacques Roche; Border fences in the globalizing world: beyond traditional geopolitics and post-positivist approaches, Serghei Golunov; Is the wall soluble into international law?, Jean-Marc Sorel; Walls of money: securitization of border discourse and militarization of markets, Elisabeth Vallet and Charles-Philippe David. Part III Fenced Borders in the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries: Walls and access to natural resources, Sabine Lavorel; Border fences as an anti-immigration device: a comparative view of American and Spanish policies, Said Saddiki; Walls, sensors and drones: technology and surveillance on the US-Mexico border, Rodrigo Nieto-Gomez; Technologies, practices and the reproduction of conflict: the impact of the West Bank barrier on peace building, Christine Leunberger; Towards a high-tech ‘limes’ on the edges of Europe? Managing the external borders of the European Union, Vincent Boulanin and Renaud Bellais; Towards the wall between Nogales, Arizona and Nogales, Sonora, Irasema Coronado; Border wall as architecture, Ronald Rael. Index.
Article
Current revelations about the secret US-NSA program, PRISM, have confirmed the large-scale mass surveillance of the telecommunication and electronic messages of governments, companies, and citizens, including the United States' closest allies in Europe and Latin America. The transnational ramifications of surveillance call for a re-evaluation of contemporary world politics' practices. The debate cannot be limited to the United States versus the rest of the world or to surveillance versus privacy; much more is at stake. This collective article briefly describes the specificities of cyber mass surveillance, including its mix of the practices of intelligence services and those of private companies providing services around the world. It then investigates the impact of these practices on national security, diplomacy, human rights, democracy, subjectivity, and obedience.
Book
In July 1999, Canadian authorities intercepted four boats off the coast of British Columbia carrying nearly six hundred Chinese citizens who were being smuggled into Canada. Government officials held the migrants on a Canadian naval base, which it designated a port of entry. As one official later recounted to the author, the Chinese migrants entered a legal limbo, treated as though they were walking through a long tunnel of bureaucracy to reach Canadian soil. The “long tunnel thesis” is the basis of Alison Mountz’s wide-ranging investigation into the power of states to change the relationship between geography and law as they negotiate border crossings. Mountz draws from many sources to argue that refugee-receiving states capitalize on crises generated by high-profile human smuggling events to implement restrictive measures designed to regulate migration. Whether states view themselves as powerful actors who can successfully exclude outsiders or as vulnerable actors in need of stronger policies to repel potential threats, they end up subverting access to human rights, altering laws, and extending power beyond their own borders. Using examples from Canada, Australia, and the United States, Mountz demonstrates the centrality of space and place in efforts to control the fate of unwanted migrants.
Article
The pervasive quality of governments to reach directly into our lives, the striking ability of far-flung corporations to make their presence felt at close quarters, and the ease with which NGOs fold distant harms into local campaigns all speak to a world in which distances are no longer a good indication of either separation or proximity. Such actions speak to a world in which proximity and distance play across one another, where topology not topography, it is argued, offers a better starting point to grasp many of the spatial and temporal dynamics involved. The article sets out the limits of territorial and networked approaches to power and goes on to show how the ability of powerful bodies to draw distant others within close reach or construct the close-at-hand at a distance opens up an understanding of power more in tune with the spatial reworkings of authority and influence today. More significantly, it goes on to illustrate how power-topologies enable actors to register their presence through quieter, less brash forms of power than domination and overt control, and, in so doing, allow some actors to exert an influence and reach way beyond their means and resources.
Article
The discussion in this paper moves through three stages. In the first the relation of political spaces and borders to citizenship is interrogated; in the second, notions of deterritorialization and reterritorialization are examined in relation to ideas of the material constitution of Europe; and, in the third section it returns to the issue of citizenship and its relation to cosmopolitanism. Rather than being a solution or a prospect, Europe currently exists as a 'borderland, and this raises a number of issues that need to be confronted.
Article
From offshore border enforcement to detention centers on remote islands, struggles over human smuggling, detention, asylum, and associated policies play out along the geographical margins of the nation-state. In this paper, I argue that islands are part of a broader enforcement archipelago of detention, a tactic of migration control. Island enforcement practices deter, detain, and deflect migrants from the shores of sovereign territory. Islands thus function as key sites of territorial struggle where nation-states use distance, invisibility, and sub-national jurisdictional status (Baldacchino & Milne, 2006) to operationalize Ong’s (2006) ‘graduated zones of sovereignty’. In sites that introduce ambiguity into migrants’ legal status, state and non-state actors negotiate and illuminate geopolitical arrangements that structure mobility. This research traces patterns among distant and distinct locations through examination of sovereign and biopolitical powers that haunt asylum-seekers detained on islands. Offshore detention, in turn, fuels spatial strategies employed in onshore detention practices internal to sovereign territory.
Article
Despite the centrality of Mexico–US border policing to pre- and post-9/11 US immigration geopolitics, perhaps the most significant yet largely ignored immigration-related fallout of the so-called war on terrorism has been the extension of interior immigration policing practices away from the southwest border. As I outline in this paper, these interior spaces of immigration geopolitics—nominally said to be about fighting terrorism, but in practice concerned with undocumented labor migration across the Mexico–US border—have not emerged accidentally. Rather, the recent criminalization of immigration law, the sequestering of immigration enforcement from court oversight and the enrollment of proxy immigration officers at sub-state scales have been actively pursued so as to make interior enforcement newly central to US immigration geopolitics. I argue here that these embryonic spaces of localized immigration geopolitics shed new light on the spatiality of US immigration governance, which has typically been thought of by geographers as active predominantly at the territorial margins of the state. I conclude the paper with some thoughts as to how geographers might rethink the what and where of contemporary US immigration geopolitics.
Article
This article deals with the exceptional regimes in place for dealing with asylum seekers intercepted at Australia’s borders. These regimes are largely ungoverned by statute and, their implementation is, therefore, almost ungovernable by the courts. The situation is clearly one which impacts adversely on asylum seekers, but this article ends by arguing that embedded in our lived out view of the appropriate exercise of sovereign power at and beyond our border are unsettling implications about its appropriate exercise within.
Article
  Technologies that deploy algorithmic calculation are becoming ubiquitous to the homeland securitization of the war on terror. From the surveillance networks of the city subway to the biometric identifiers of new forms of border control, the possibility to identify “association rules” between people, places, objects and events has brought the logic of pre-emption into the most mundane and prosaic spaces. Yet, it is not the case that the turn to algorithmic calculation simply militarizes society, nor even that we are witnessing strictly a commercialization of security. Rather, algorithmic war is one form of Foucault's sense of a “continuation of war by other means”, where the war-like architectures of self/other, here/there, safe/risky, normal/suspicious are played out in the politics of daily life. This paper explores the situated interplay of algorithmic practices across commercial, security, and military spheres, revealing the violent geographies that are concealed in the glossy techno-science of algorithmic calculation.
Article
This paper is concerned with the changing nature of space. More and more of the spaces of everyday life come loaded up with software, lines of code that are installing a new kind of automatically reproduced background and whose nature is only now starting to become clear. This paper is an attempt to map out this background. The paper begins by considering the nature of software. Subsequently, a simple audit is undertaken of where software is chiefly to be found in the spaces of everyday life. The next part of the paper notes the way in which more and more of this software is written to mimic corporeal intelligence, so as to produce a better and more unobtrusive fit with habitation. The paper then sets out three different geographies of software and the way in which they are implicated in the reproduction of everyday life before concluding with a consideration of the degree to which we might consider the rise of software as an epochal event or something much more modest.
Article
This article proposes the concept of the biometric border in order to signal a dual-faced phenomenon in the contemporary war on terror: the turn to scientific technologies and managerial expertise in the politics of border management; and the exercise of biopower such that the bodies of migrants and travellers themselves become sites of multiple encoded boundaries. Drawing on the US VISIT programme of border controls (United States Visitor and Immigrant Status Indicator Technology), the article proposes three central themes of the politics of the biometric border. First, the use of risk profiling as a means of governing mobility within the war on terror, segregating ‘legitimate’ mobilities such as leisure and business, from ‘illegitimate’ mobilities such as terrorism and illegal immigration. Second, the representation of biometrics and the body, such that identity is assumed to be anchored as a source of prediction and prevention. Finally, the techniques of authorization that allow the surveillance of mobility to be practiced by private security firms and homeland security citizens alike. Throughout the article, I argue that, though the biometric border is becoming an almost ubiquitous frontier in the war on terror, it also contains ambivalent, antagonistic and undecidable moments that make it contestable.
Discussion paper: Private sponsorship of refugees program
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Adelman, H. (1992). Discussion paper: Private sponsorship of refugees program. Refugee, 12(3), 2e10.
Europe as borderland. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space
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Balibar, E. (2009). Europe as borderland. Environment and Planning D: Society and Space, 27(2), 190e215.
The m€ obius ribbon of security(ies)
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Bigo, D. (2001). The m€ obius ribbon of security(ies). In M. Albert, D. Jacobson, & Y. Lapid (Eds.), Identities, borders, orders (pp. 91e116). Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Europe's migrant deal with Turkey may be unraveling
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Cunningham, E. (2016). Europe's migrant deal with Turkey may be unraveling. But it was flawed from the start. Washington Post, 26 May http://wpo.st/OfWx1. Economist. (2015). Europe starts putting up walls. The Economist, 19 September http://econ.st/1MdFDaa.
The hotspot approach to managing exceptional migratory flows
European Commission. (2015). The hotspot approach to managing exceptional migratory flows. Brussels: European Commission. http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/ home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/european-agenda-migration/backgroundinformation/docs/2_hotspots_en.pdf.
The critical state of the union near futures online
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Feher, M. (2016). The critical state of the union near futures online, Europe at a crossroads. http://nearfuturesonline.org/the-critical-state-of-the-union/.
In the name of humanity: The government of threat and care
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Feldman, I., & Ticktin, M. (2010). In the name of humanity: The government of threat and care. Durham, NC: Duke University Press.
The royal canadian and American mounted Police? A bad idea iPolitics
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Harris, M. (2013). The royal canadian and American mounted Police? A bad idea iPolitics. http://ipolitics.ca/2013/07/28/385546/.