Thursday, September 22, 2022

Immigration Article of the Day: Exit Rights, Seamless Borders and the New Carceral State by Audrey Macklin


Exit Rights, Seamless Borders and the New Carceral State by Audrey MacklinInternational Migration, Forthcomingi


Enlisting states of origin or transit to prevent exit from their own territory has become a tool of extraterritorial migration control for states of the global North. Violeta Moreno-Lax and Mariagiulia Giuffré (2019) dub this trend ‘consensual containment.’ I view it as the harbinger of a loosely networked global migration regime for governing the circulation of people. This article first explores the practical erosion of the right of exit since the demise of communism. Next, I turn to the legitimating function performed by anti-trafficking and anti-smuggling campaigns in reframing breaches of exit rights as an exercise of the cynical practice now dubbed ‘penal humanitarianism’. I conclude by querying whether a paradigm of mobility organized around entry and exit is veering toward obsolescence. Current trends, particularly in relation to securitization of migration, push the logic of migration governance beyond obstructing exit and preventing entry as ends in themselves. I suggest that the logic is increasingly directed more at assuming control over movement as such. Against the contemporary claim of increased global mobility for some and decreased mobility for others, I contend that mobility - understood as the capacity for 'free movement' - is on the decline for everyone, even if actual movement by some is on the increase.


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