Border Politics: Social Movements, Collective Identities, and Globalization

Border Politics: Social Movements, Collective Identities, and Globalization

Border Politics: Social Movements, Collective Identities, and Globalization

Border Politics: Social Movements, Collective Identities, and Globalization

Synopsis

In the current historical moment borders have taken on heightened material and symbolic significance, shaping identities and the social and political landscape. "Borders"- defined broadly to include territorial dividing lines as well as sociocultural boundaries- have become increasingly salient sites of struggle over social belonging and cultural and material resources. How do contemporary activists navigate and challenge these borders? What meanings do they ascribe to different social, cultural and political boundaries, and how do these meanings shape the strategies in which they engage? Moreover, how do these social movements confront internal borders based on the differences that emerge within social change initiatives? Border Politics, edited by Nancy A. Naples and Jennifer Bickham Mendez, explores these important questions through eleven carefully selected case studies situated in geographic contexts around the globe. By conceptualizing struggles over identity, social belonging and exclusion as extensions of border politics, the authors capture the complex ways in which geographic, cultural, and symbolic dividing lines are blurred and transcended, but also fortified and redrawn. This volume notably places right-wing and social justice initiatives in the same analytical frame to identify patterns that span the political spectrum. Border Politics offers a lens through which to understand borders as sites of diverse struggles, as well as the strategies and practices used by diverse social movements in today's globally interconnected world. Contributors: Phillip Ayoub, Renata Blumberg, Yvonne Braun, Moon Charania, Michael Dreiling, Jennifer Johnson, Jesse Klein, Andrej Kurnik, Sarah Maddison, Duncan McDuie-Ra, Jennifer Bickham Mendez, Nancy A. Naples, David Paternotte, Maple Razsa, Raphi Rechitsky, Kyle Rogers, Deana Rohlinger, Cristina Sanidad, Meera Sehgal, Tara Stamm, Michelle Téllez

Excerpt

JENNIFER BICKHAM MENDEZ AND NANCY A. NAPLES

In 2007 a group of protesters gathered outside the Office of the High Representative of the European Union in Sarajevo, Bosnia. Ethnic Bosnian “erased” workers whose citizenship had been revoked following Slovenia’s independence were joined by their allies from the newly formed country—the Invisible Workers of the World—to protest the unjust enforcement of EU borders, which had rendered these workers illegal immigrants in their own homeland. That same year, activists from across Europe and beyond camped on the border between the Ukraine and neighboring new Eastern European member states of the EU to protest the increased militarization of the border and an unjust visa regime. Across the Atlantic at another border, grandmothers dressed in pink camouflage T-shirts posed for a picture as part of a publicity stunt to recruit for the Minutemen, a self-proclaimed civil defense corps of mostly white men who undertake patrols and surveillance operations along the US-Mexican border to prevent migrants from Mexico from reaching the United States. Half way around the world in Pakistan, veiled Muslim women mobilized in armed defense of the Lal Masjid (Red Mosque), proclaiming their willingness to give their lives to protect the border between what they saw as foreign immorality and religious purity.

Despite the contrasting motivations and political orientations that underlie mobilizations such as these, they share important . . .

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