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Title: Migration resistance as border politics : counter-imaginaries of EUrope
Author: Stierl, Maurice
ISNI:       0000 0004 5350 013X
Awarding Body: University of Warwick
Current Institution: University of Warwick
Date of Award: 2014
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This thesis seeks to conceptualise and mobilise migration resistances as forces of animation through which contemporary forms of EUropean border governance can be productively explored. By following different migration struggles ethnographically, it inquires into their emergence and asks what practices of government and control they reveal. Situated within the academic fields of ‘critical border and migration studies’ and Michel Foucault’s conceptualisations of power, resistance and the art of government, resistance is understood as method. As a set of analytics and catalysts that sets sociopolitical processes and phenomena into frictional motion, resistance is developed as a mode of critical investigation. It is argued that, while always specific and situated, migration struggles form transversal resistances that bring to light particular aspects of the ‘EUropean border dispositif’ which seeks to monitor, regulate and deter certain human mobilities. In a multi-sited ethnography, conducted in diverse borderscapes, heterogeneous struggles are explored. The first study follows the Non-Citizen movement that emerged in Germany and interprets their confrontational and provocative struggle as dissent. The second ethnographic study explores the Boats4People campaign that took place in Italy and Tunisia to protest migrant deaths in the Mediterranean Sea and focuses on their embodied practices of solidarity. The third study follows different individuals and groups in transit into three Greek borderscapes and conceives their attempts of border-subversion and escape as excessive practices. Dissent, solidarity and excess are mobilised and interpreted as three specific but interrelated facets of resistance that collide with and contest manifold diffused border practices and materialisations throughout and beyond EUropean space. Furthermore, it is argued that migration struggles question the community in whose name unbelonging and exclusions are performed. The thesis suggests that these resistances not only expose certain dominant discursive frames through which EUrope becomes continuously reproduced and recognised as united, peaceful and humanitarian, but also draw attention to questions of colonialism and race as well as to the various registers of violence that must always underpin EUrope’s division-creating practices. Through migration struggles, EUrope’s dominant frames and self-conceptions are decentered so that other imaginaries of politics, solidarity and community come to the fore.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Department of Politics and International Studies ; University of Warwick
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: JV Colonies and colonization. Emigration and immigration. International migration