The Constitutive Exterior: EU border externalisation and the social dynamics of the Senegal River Valley
Dr Hassan Ould Moctar (SOAS University of London)
Public Seminar Series
Wednesday, 23 February 2022, 5pm to 6.30pm
Hosted by Refugee Studies Centre
Public Seminar Series, Hilary term 2022
Race, Borders, and Global (Im)mobility
Series convenor: Dr Hanno Brankamp, Departmental Lecturer in Forced Migration
This seminar series critically interrogates the ways in which militarised borders, migration enforcement, and their racial orderings continue to be normalised on a global scale. The political drive towards expanding walls, policing infrastructures, camps, detention centres, interceptions at sea, push backs, deportations, surveillance, and racist immigration policies that restrict asylum and migration is hereby not only a legacy of past empires but is also indicative of new emerging geographies of (im)mobility, racialisation, and liberal violence. Speakers in this series come from a range of disciplines and will examine global migration through questions of race and racism, coloniality, nationalism, citizenship, belonging, criminalisation, and bordering.
Series poster (pdf)
About the seminar
This talk will situate the EU border externalisation process within the regional history and social dynamics of the Senegal River Valley. It draws from fieldwork data gathered in the Mauritanian border town of Rosso, a crucial node within the architecture of the EU border regime in West Africa. By exploring the dynamics of the border crossing, as well as the experiences of illegalised migrant workers in Rosso, the presentation will show how the externalisation process is conditioned by the histories and social dynamics of the regions in which it unfolds. In Rosso, migrants who are elsewhere illegalised by the border regime are also caught up in a regional history of racialised displacement and accumulation by dispossession. As regards the Rosso border, the infrastructure of externalisation upholds the colonial conversion of the Senegal River into a territorial dividing line. At the same time, however, the situated socio-spatial dynamics of this locale force compromises on this infrastructure, thereby acting upon and transforming the externalisation process in its unfolding.
The video of this seminar is available to watch on YouTube.