Performativity, Pragmatism and Border Control Technologies: Democratising the Ontologies of Border Criminology
This article seeks to expand debates about Southernising border criminology to include an ontological dimension. In the context of increasingly technological border control practices, critical analysis of the global circuits of mobility control requires explicit theorisation of the ontological status of humans vis-a-vis their material environment. Such theorisation can also imbue border criminology scholarship with a radical democratic openness to Southern worldviews by destabilising traditional Northern forms of knowledge production about borders and migration. To this end, I synthesise insights from the framework of performativity and the philosophical tradition of pragmatism to propose a framework for analysing the deployment of novel border control technologies in the Global South. The resultant framework challenges state-centric and Northern-centric perspectives on crimmigration control by foregrounding Southern agency and explicitly challenging technicist framings of border control technologies that represent these tools as neutral technical components within a broader global system of state-based ‘migration management’.
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