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(Im)moral Borders in Practice

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Nora El Qadim , Beste Isleyen, Leonie Ansems De Vries, Signe Sofie Hansen , Sibel Karadag , Debbie Lisle , Damien Simonneau

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1608-1638
Number of pages31
Issue number5
Published5 Nov 2021

King's Authors


This Forum aims to push existing debates in critical border and migration studies over the featuring of morals, ethics and rights in everyday practices relating to the governance of the mobility of non-citizen populations. Its contributors steer away from the actual evaluation or advocacy of the good/just/ethical, focusing instead on the sociological examination of morals and ethics in practice, i.e. how actors understand morally and ethically the border and migration policies they implement or resist. A proliferating interest in the discursive and non-discursive materialisation of moral and ethical elements in asylum and migration policies has examined the intertwinement of care and control logics underlying the management of refugee camps, borders and borderzones, and hotspots alongside the deployment of search-and-rescue operations. Nevertheless, recent research has shown the need to unpack narratives and actions displaying values and symbols that are not necessarily encompassed within this intertwinement of compassion and repression. We argue that there is a need to pay more attention to the diversity, plurality and the operation of morality, ethics and rights in settings and geographies, and of including a diversity of actors both across and beyond EUrope.

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