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Analysing the example of data territorialisation
Andreas Baur-Ahrens

This chapter engages the (re)organisation of cyberspace by examining the ongoing debates on data territorialisation. Building on cybersecurity discourses after the Snowden revelations, the chapter analyses how the movement of data is supposed to be constrained such that it literally would not leave the territory of a nation state on its way from sender to receiver. The chapter thereby highlights – against the placeless notion of cyberspace – the importance of the physical infrastructure of servers and data exchange points that exist in concrete buildings on national territories. The argument behind the rerouting initiatives is that data, once it would not physically leave the country on its travels, would be easier to protect. However, as the chapter argues, such a political intervention into the open architecture of the Internet entails deep-seated transformations of power in cyberspace.

in Security/ Mobility
A discourse view on the European Community and the abolition of border controls in the second half of the 1980s
Stef Wittendorp

This chapter examines from a discourse perspective the debate on the abolition of border controls in the European Community (EC) in the second half of the 1980s. It analyses how the shifting constellation between the border as security device and as economic enabler made possible the removal of border controls as well as to conceive of new forms of regulating security and mobility. In a broader context, the chapter is critical of the view of the EC and now European Union as a post-national entity that has successfully moved beyond a divisionary and exclusive nationally-oriented politics. Instead, the regulation of mobility and thus the politics of inclusion and exclusion continues apace although perhaps in less visible and more unexpected places.

in Security/ Mobility
Open Access (free)
Politics of movement

This book brings together a number of contributions that look into the political regulation of movement and analyses that engage the material enablers of and constraints on such movement. It attempts to bridge theoretical perspectives from critical security studies and political geography in order to provide a more comprehensive perspective on security and mobility. In this vein, the book brings together approaches to mobility that take into account both techniques and practices of regulating movement, as well as their underlying infrastructures. Together the contributions inquire into a politics of movement that lies at the core of the production of security. Drawing on the insight that security is a contingent concept that hinges on the social construction of threat – which in turn must be understood through its political, social, economic, and cultural dimensions – the contributors offer fine-grained perspectives on a presumably mobile and insecure world. The title of the book, Security/Mobility, is a direct reference to this world that at times appears dominated by these two paradigms. As is shown throughout the book, rather than being opposed to each other, a great deal of political effort is undertaken in order to reconcile the need for security and the necessity of mobility. Running through the book is the view that security and mobility are entangled in a constant dynamic – a dynamic that converges in what is conceptualised here as a politics of movement.

Lessons for critical security studies?
Emmanuel-Pierre Guittet

The epilogue makes an effort to close the bracket that this introduction has opened. Arguing from the disciplinary perspective of critical security studies, it takes a step back and evaluates which lessons can be learned from an agenda of security/mobility. The epilogue underlines the need for critical security studies to incorporate the notion of mobility more strongly, particularly with regard to its theoretical underpinnings and empirical and material manifestations. Moreover, it calls to take into account the multiplicity of actors that shape and influence any politics of movement, and to pay attention to (globalised) narratives of mobility and risk.

in Security/ Mobility
Open Access (free)
Paradoxes of hierarchy and authority in the squatters movement in Amsterdam
Author: Nazima Kadir

This book is an ethnographic study of the internal dynamics of a subcultural community that defines itself as a social movement. While the majority of scholarly studies on this movement focus on its official face, on its front stage, this book concerns itself with the ideological and practical paradoxes at work within the micro-social dynamics of the backstage, an area that has so far been neglected in social movement studies. The central question is how hierarchy and authority function in a social movement subculture that disavows such concepts. The squatters’ movement, which defines itself primarily as anti-hierarchical and anti-authoritarian, is profoundly structured by the unresolved and perpetual contradiction between both public disavowal and simultaneous maintenance of hierarchy and authority within the movement. This study analyzes how this contradiction is then reproduced in different micro-social interactions, examining the methods by which people negotiate minute details of their daily lives as squatter activists in the face of a funhouse mirror of ideological expectations reflecting values from within the squatter community, that, in turn, often refract mainstream, middle class norms.

Open Access (free)
The economy of unromantic solidarity
Nazima Kadir

The conclusion of this book reflects on how this movement reproduces two social profiles of centrality and marginality and its economy of unromantic solidarity.

in The autonomous life?
Nazima Kadir

This chapter explores how authority functions in this community. Specifically, the types of habitus and skills possessed by those who hold authority in the movement. The chapter examines the consequences of participants’ backgrounds on the activities of the movement and the invisible logic of why and how more culturally central people, who have a number of resources needed by a movement, accumulate capital and become authority figures.

in The autonomous life?
Open Access (free)
The autonomous life?
Nazima Kadir

The introduction to this book places the squatters movement in Amsterdam in historical context, examining key events in the movement and charting changes to the politics of squatting and squatters lifestyle in the 70’s and 80’s through to the present day. In addition to examining the range of historical sources available on the movement, the introduction provides a review of social movement literature outlining the neglect of internal dynamics and social movement performances and habitus, which exists both in classical social movement literature and its recent culturally oriented scholarship, including those that result from ethnographic research and participant observation. Social movements literature is dominated by a series of recurrent theoretical questions, which are fairly removed from actual dynamics within social movements themselves, the main subject of analysis being “the social movement organization” rather than participants and symbolic aesthetics rather than portraits and analysis of social movement communities and the people who comprise them. As a study of these neglected areas and the internal social dynamics of the squatting scene, the introduction details the study’s methodology and the data collection process, including the significance of participant observation.

in The autonomous life?
Nazima Kadir

Chapter 4 considers why social movement subcultures often serve as a form of youth culture. This leads to a number of activists constructing their involvements in social movements as a liminal, youthful stage in their lives before they transition to so-called adult lifestyles which require long-term commitment and responsibility, such as by dedicating themselves to a career and/or a family. Moreover, someone who has already transitioned into an adult lifestyle can then enter a movement subculture and revert to a youth cultures way of living defined by changeability, temporariness, and lack of responsibility.

in The autonomous life?
Nazima Kadir

This chapter presents a cartography of internal power dynamics within the intimate space of squatted houses. Squatted houses comprise the fundamental basis of the structure of the squatters movement in Amsterdam. Communal living groups within squatted households both reflect and refract larger movement dynamics of hierarchy and authority. They reflect larger movement standards in the sense that one’s squatter capital contributes to one’s status position within a squatted household. They refract in that within a household, the highest values are to maintain a lively and peaceful group dynamic, silently maintain the unspoken hierarchies within a group without challenging them, and avoid tension and conflict

in The autonomous life?