‘Keeping on the move without letting pass’: Rethinking biopolitics through mobility"

Tazzioli, Martina. 2021. ‘Keeping on the move without letting pass’: Rethinking biopolitics through mobility". Environment & Planning C: Politics and space, pp. 7-10. ISSN 2399-6544 [Article]

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Abstract or Description

“This is the sixth time that I am coming back to the border, in Ventimiglia, after being taken by force to the city of Taranto. I am now trying again to cross to France, I really hope that this time I make it, as I have no money and no energies left”. M., a Sudanese national who arrived in Italy in 2018 from Libya, is one of the many migrants who try to cross to France, along the coast, passing through the Italian city of Ventimiglia. Yet, most of those who try are pushed back to Italy by the French police, sometimes being held for hours in the police station at the border, without being allowed to claim asylum. On the Italian side of the border, some migrants are randomly caught by the police and put on one of the coaches and, on a weekly basis, transferred to Taranto, a city located 1200 kilometres southern of Ventimiglia. Migrants are taken to the Hotspot of Taranto and, after being identified, they are usually released few days later; the majority of them goes back to the Italian-French border, by train or by bus, despite they might be exhausted and running out money. Such a routinised police practice of internal forced transfers does not discourage migrants from going back to Ventimiglia and from trying again and again; nor are migrants taken to Taranto with the goal of detaining them for long time. And yet, they are kept on the move, forced to divert their routes and to repeat the same journey multiple times. The forced hyper-mobility of the migrants who try to cross to France from Ventimiglia is not an exceptional case study; rather, the focus on Ventimiglia sheds light on the dramatic migrants’ goose game , that is, on the convoluted geographies that they are forced to undertake due to legal restrictions, police measures, spatial blockages and ad-ministrative violence.

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biopolitics, mobility, immigration

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5 December 2020Accepted
22 February 2021Published

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Date Deposited:

05 Jan 2022 09:13

Last Modified:

06 Jan 2022 16:10

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Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.



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