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Border Struggles: Migration, Subjectivity and the Common

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A Review of Border as Method, or, the Multiplication of Labor by Sandro Mezzadra and Brett Neilson

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The review assesses first and foremost the capability of Mezzadra and Neilson’s book to radically tackle some urgent issues concerning both capital’s regulation of migratory movements and the subjective autonomy these latter incessantly express. The main original contribution of the text is a conception of the border as an epistemic device through which to address and act upon a variety of social processes, from migration policies to labour transformations, from capital’s restructuring to governmental regulations. Subsequently, two crucial topics are critically discussed: 1) the methodological link between epistemology and conflictual subjectivity (its roots in the operaista tradition, the creative way it is employed in Border as Method, and some problematic elements it raises); 2) the compelling – but problematic from a practical perspective – way in which the issue of political organisation is situated against the current phase of capitalist development by means of concepts such as translation and the common.

Affiliations: 1: Centre for Social Studies, University of Coimbra


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