Wars of Mobility
Source TitleEuropean Journal of Social Theory
PublisherSAGE PUBLICATIONS LTD
University of Melbourne Author/sPapastergiadis, Nikos
AffiliationCulture and Communication
Document TypeJournal Article
CitationsPapastergiadis, N. (2010). Wars of Mobility. EUROPEAN JOURNAL OF SOCIAL THEORY, 13 (3), pp.343-361. https://doi.org/10.1177/1368431010371756.
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<jats:p> In the aftermath of 9/11, world leaders addressed the nation as a body under threat and hastened in new policies to bolster border protection and ‘securitize’ immigration. While the terrorist attacks cast new forms of public attention on the risks posed by mobile agents, the link between national security and regulating migration has always been at the forefront of the constitution of the nation state. Despite this persistent anxiety towards the social impact of migration and the status of people on the move, a more general understanding of mobility is not only missing in public debates, but has been a lacunae in the social sciences. What is mobility — a state, a force, a set of shifting co-ordinates? How does the definition of mobility shape social attitudes and personal experiences? This article examines the use of organic and mechanistic metaphors that have underpinned the classical paradigm for understanding of mobility in the social sciences. It argues that the global patterns of migration and the contemporary forms of hybrid subjectivity do not fit well with this paradigm. The limits and kinetophobic associations generated by the classical paradigm are examined through Harald Kleinschmidt’s theory of residentialism. The final part of this article outlines an alternative conceptual frame that is based on key terms from complexity theory. </jats:p>
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