The government of migrant mobs: Temporary divisible multiplicities in border zones

Tazzioli, Martina. 2017. The government of migrant mobs: Temporary divisible multiplicities in border zones. European Journal of Social Theory, 20(4), pp. 473-490. ISSN 1368-4310 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

This article engages with the production and government of migrant multiplicities in border zones of Europe, arguing that the specificity of migrant multiplicities consists in their temporary and divisible character. It is argued that there are three different forms of migrant multiplicities: (1) the multiplicity produced due to migrants’ spatial proximity; (2) the virtual multiplicity generated through data; and (3) the visualized and narrated multiplicity that emerges from media portraits of the ‘spectacle’ of the arrivals of migrants. It is claimed that multiplicities are made to divide and partition the migrants and thus prevent the formation of a collective political subject. In the concluding section, the article deals with the ambivalent character of the term ‘the mob’, addressing the twofold dimension of migrant multiplicities: these are in fact generated by techniques of power, at the same time exceeding them and representing potential emerging political subjects.

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border zones, migration, mob, multiplicity, political subject

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26 July 2016Published Online
1 November 2017Published

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Date Deposited:

01 Aug 2019 14:01

Last Modified:

10 Jun 2021 03:07

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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