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Title: Safe Cracking: From Safe(r) Spaces to Collectivising Vulnerability in Migrant Solidarity Organising
Authors: English, Claire Louise
Supervisors: Papadopoulos, Dimitris
Puig de la Bellacasa, Maria
Award date: 14-Dec-2017
Presented at: University of Leicester
Abstract: In the context of the expansion and restructuring of the European Union, the borders of ‘sovereign nation states’ and their significance in an ever-globalising world economy are under continual scrutiny. The rejection and traversal of these borders occurs daily by illegalised migrants who continue to move; activists and community workers obstructing the physicality and enforcement of border controls, amongst many more quiet micro-political and everyday resistances. In this context it becomes important to analyse organisational frameworks and practices of transnational activist and charitable organisations working with migrants that construct boundaries and borders in their own practices. In particular, it’s necessary to recognise that the political activity of these groups takes place against a background of racialised discourses, which, for instance, construct migrant men as retrogressive on issues of gender and sexuality and shared spaces as unsafe or less safe as a result. This critical ethnography of migrant solidarity groups draws from fifteen interviews with activists and fifteen participant observations. This project looks at the ways that terms like ‘otherness’ and ‘safety’ are constituted, concluding that these conditions can be unmade and reconceptualised collectively through exploring shared vulnerabilities and the possibilities for solidarity through every day micropolitical activity. Building on critiques of ‘Safer Spaces’, this project argues against the necessity for all participants to ‘feel safe’ in order to take part in the collective social reproduction and that there is room for productive discomforts as a form of praxis. The tensions that emerge when examining the individualised experiences of tackling vulnerability in terms of a reliance upon personal ‘strength’ and ‘resilience’ concurrently with more collective attempts at embracing uncertainty reveal vulnerability to be a concept deeply necessary as part of bringing together disparate subjectivities in migrant solidarity organising spaces.
Type: Thesis
Level: Doctoral
Qualification: PhD
Rights: Copyright © the author. All rights reserved.
Appears in Collections:Leicester Theses
Theses, School of Management

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