1st Edition

UK Borderscapes Sites of Enforcement and Resistance

Edited By Kahina Le Louvier, Karen Latricia Hough Copyright 2024
    236 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    236 Pages 6 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book analyses bordering practices and their negative effects as well as the many creative and often grassroots ways in which borders are resisted and reinvented.

    From the hostile environment to Brexit and the Nationality and Borders Bill, the UK border regime has become increasingly strict and complex, operating both at the edge of the state and within everyday life in unprecedented ways. At the same time, this securitisation approach is often contested, and its effects are fought daily by many groups and individuals. This book explores this tension, documenting and analysing how the contemporary UK border is imagined, constructed, deconstructed, and reconstructed in multiple ways. To draw together the different pieces that compose this evolving and conflicting landscape, this book uses the concept of "borderscapes", which views borders as sites of multiple tensions between hegemonic, non-hegemonic, and counter-hegemonic imaginaries and practices. This lens enables contributors to draw a multifocal overview of the UK border that includes the different human and material actors that form it, the spaces and practices they shape, and the imaginaries and counter-imaginaries that emerge from their conflictual encounters.

    Bringing together contributions by researchers from a variety of disciplines, this book will be of interest to scholars and students in the fields of migration and border studies, refugee studies, human geography, criminology, sociology, and anthropology.

    1 Introduction

    Kahina Le Louvier and Karen Latricia Hough

    PART 1 Legal and operational implementation of the border

    2 From the Aliens Act to the ‘hostile environment’: The making of the British border control system

    Evan Smith

    3 Towards two-way integration: A comparative review of refugee integration strategies

    Dan X. Fisher, Scot Hunter, Savan Qadir and Alison Phipps

    4 Temporalities, dependency, and the politics of marriage migration

    Eleonore Kofman and Elena Vacchelli

    5 Rethinking access to asylum: Border-shifting, burdenshifting, and externalisation of international protection in the light of the UK-Rwanda arrangement

    Sonia Morano-Foadi and Micaela Malena

    6 Politics of exhaustion at the UK border: Depoliticising suffering, invisibilising violence

    Marta Welander

    7 Cracks in the UK borderscape imaginary: Opportunism, fluidity, and contradictions in implementing migration controls abroad

    Nicole Ostrand

    PART 2 Lived experiences of the border and modes of resistance

    8 Conflicting imaginaries of the UK border and self-bordering

    Karen Latricia Hough and Kahina Le Louvier

    9 Evaluations of ‘opportunity’ versus ‘risk’: Vietnamese migrants’ experiences and perceptions of the UK border

    Tamsin Barber, Hai Nguyen and Phuc Van Nguyen

    10 No longer marginal: Migrant rights activism and the confrontation with everyday borders

    Don Flynn

    11 Institutionalised resistance and everyday bordering

    Kathryn Cassidy

    12 The material politics of asylum support: Speed, intimacy, and confusion

    Dan X. Fisher and Sarah M. Hughes

    13 Migrant women resisting borders through participatory arts

    Laura Marziale, Rose Knight, the Stronger Together Leaders, Fatiha, Felicia, Ijeoma, Khadidja, Lian, Lucie, and Tracey Reynolds

    14 Epilogue

    Kahina Le Louvier and Karen Latricia Hough


    Kahina Le Louvier is a Research Fellow in the Computer and Information Sciences Department at Northumbria University. She is a researcher working on various aspects of migration, including environmental migration, the information needs and barriers experienced by people seeking asylum in the UK and France, drivers and imaginaries of migration, the heritage practices of people in exile, and the ethics of migration research.

    Karen Latricia Hough is a Research Fellow at the Centre of Excellence in Terrorism, Resilience, Intelligence and Organised Crime Research at Sheffield Hallam University, UK. She is an expert in migration and refugee studies. She obtained her doctorate in social anthropology from the University of Oxford, and she has worked on several EU-funded projects regarding the development of asylum and immigration law in the Russian Federation and in Europe. Her current research projects focus on modern slavery and anti-trafficking.

    This timely and important collection casts critical light on the policies, people, and practices that constitute the borders of post-Brexit Britain. Drawing together insights from a range of leading international scholars and activists, UK Borderscapes unpacks the history, evolution, and effects of bordering, illustrating the harms of border enforcement, and tracing the vibrancy of resistance that confronts bordering. In detailing the growth of migrants’ rights movements, forms of everyday solidarity, and the role of materials in contesting borders, the collection illustrates the many and varied sites of everyday resistance that are reshaping borders today.

    Jonathan Darling, Durham University, UK.

    The book is timely, relevant, and it lifts the veil on how decisions are made by the State and its agents to cap irregular migration via security and border control policies. The equity and fairness of these outcome are evaluated and the conclusion drawn that protection gaps for migrants and asylum seekers exist in law and in policy. Although the focus is on UK Borderscapes, the multi-disciplinary discussion, layered analysis, identification of the power relations which exist, and the proposals offered resonate beyond the UK. It appeals to the Global South audience where natural disasters, poverty, civil war, and gang violence fuel continuous irregular migration, often with inflows to the UK. The book stimulates debate to find balanced and humanitarian solutions and it informs those misled by State propaganda or media headline statements which sensationalise or simplify the plight of migrants.

     Dr. Florence Seemungal, Research Associate, Centre for Criminology, University of Oxford