Making feminist arguments against borders and regulated migration
This thesis is about theoretical critiques and practical resistance to regulated migration specifically and borders more generally. My aim is to explore how we can make strong arguments and strategies against borders and regulated migration and, more specifically, to answer this by exploring what feminist theory can contribute to the theorising and critique of borders and regulated migration. I do so by discussing five different types of arguments against regulated migration: (1) arguments by Giorgio Agamben, (2) arguments focusing on citizenship, (3) arguments focusing on labour and capital, represented by Nicholas De Genova, (4) arguments from the perspective of indigenous peoples and that focus on the racialising aspect of borders, represented by Harsha Walia, and (5) arguments that focus on how borders produce many kinds of subjects, represented by Bridget Anderson. I analyse these five approaches by reading each of them through the practical situation of onthe- ground-struggles against regulated migration and through various feminist interventions. I conclude that strong arguments against borders/regulated migration conceive these as practices that produce subjects, imaginaries, and social and political relations. Good arguments also recognise how borders and regulated migration are entangled with numerous power structures such as class, race, gender, sexuality, nation and ability, and refrain from making arguments that would secure the freedom of movement or the freedom to stay for some people at the expense of others. Good strategies must also – despite a principled rejection of the right of the state to control migration – allow for some interaction with the state in order to secure the immediate needs of unauthorised migrants.