Placing the Border in Everyday Life

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  • Edited by Reece Jones, University of Hawai‘i, Manoa, USA and Corey Johnson, University of North Carolina, Greensboro, USA
  • Series: Border Regions Series
  • Bordering no longer happens only at the borderline separating two sovereign states, but rather through a wide range of practices and decisions that occur in multiple locations within and beyond the state’s territory. Nevertheless, it is too simplistic to suggest that borders are everywhere, since this view fails to acknowledge that particular sites are significant nodes where border work is done. Similarly, border work is more likely to be done by particular people than others. This book investigates the diffusion of bordering narratives and practices by asking ‘who borders and how?’

    Placing the Border in Everyday Life complicates the connection between borders and sovereign states by identifying the individuals and organizations that engage in border work at a range of scales and places. This edited volume includes contributions from major international scholars in the field of border studies and allied disciplines who analyze where and why border work is done. By combining a new theorization of border work beyond the state with rich empirical case studies, this book makes a ground-breaking contribution to the study of borders and the state in the era of globalization.
  • Contents: Where is the border?, Corey Johnson and Reece Jones. Section I Theorizing the Border in Everyday Life: The vernacularization of borders, Anthony Cooper, Chris Perkins, and Chris Rumford; Policing borders, policing bodies: the territorial and biopolitical roots of US immigration control, Mathew Coleman and Angela Stuesse. Section II Border Work by Non-Traditional Actors Near the Border: Locating the border in Boundary Bay: non-point pollution, contaminated shellfish, and transboundary governance, Emma S. Norman; A basis for bordering: land, migration, and inter-Tohono O’odham distinction along the US-Mexico line, Kenneth D. Madsen; Whose border? Border talk and discursive governance of the Salween River-border, Vanessa Lamb; Crossing lines, crossed by lines: everyday practices and local border traffic in Schengen regulated borderlands, Judith Miggelbrink. Section III Border Work by Non-Traditional Actors Away from the Border: Symbolic bordering and the securitization of identity markers in Nigeria’s ethno-religiously segregated city of Jos, Yakubu Joseph and Rainer Rothfuss; Border wars: narratives and images of the US-Mexico border on TV, Reece Jones; Latin American borders on the lookout: recreating borders through art in the Mercosul, Anne-Laure Amilhat Szary; ‘No place like home’: boundary traffic through the prison gate, Jennifer Turner; Conclusion, Corey Johnson; Index.
  • About the Editor: Reece Jones is Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa, USA. Corey Johnson is Associate Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, USA.
  • Reviews: ‘A compelling and richly illustrated collection examining the everyday practices and impacts of bordering. If it is an exaggeration to say the border is everywhere, then the cases examined here nonetheless perceptively examine its diverse, uneven and variegated contemporary instantiations.’
    Stuart Elden, University of Warwick, UK

    ‘Border research is today one of the most vibrant interdisciplinary fields in social and cultural sciences. Instead of seeing borders as fixed lines, scholars increasingly regard them as mobile elements that may be located far away from the edges of territories. Borders are produced and reproduced by various state and non-state agents in border areas and elsewhere in societies and influence the everyday lives of individuals and social groupings in many ways. This excellent collection, written by experienced border scholars, provides the reader with some exciting and novel perspectives to understand the complexities of current border work. The collection not only includes useful concrete illustrations from various states but is also theoretically informed.’
    Anssi Paasi, University of Oulu, Finland

    ‘The study of borders has undergone a major renaissance during the past two decades. This has been partly due to the mistaken notion that the world was becoming borderless as a result of globalization and because of the collapse of the walls separating countries inside Europe. But we have also witnessed a growth in the number of walls and fences which have been constructed by states ever since the events of 9/11 as they seek to create secure spaces against the new external threats - be they terrorism or illegal migrants. Jones and Johnson's text highlights these contrasting trends and processes as they draw on diverse border experiences throughout the world, clearly showing the impact of borders at the local level and on the daily life practices of thousands of people who live nearby or who attempt to cross these borders. The book is to be recommended for anyone who wants to understand just how important borders remain in the contemporary world but equally how the significance and functions of borders are redefined as a result of global and geopolitical change.’
    David Newman, Ben-Gurion University, Israel, and Editor, Geopolitics