Friday, 31 March 2023 to Sunday, 2 April 2023

Presentations by Stream

Programme : Presentations by Stream

Border in/securities – at the nexus of space and emotions in Central- and Eastern Europe I

Borders, in particular those enclosing larger regions, nation states or supranational unions, are and have always been related to questions of insecurity and security. Recently, various crises and conflicts particularly in Central- and Eastern Europe have highlighted the relevance of understanding the role borders have in geopolitical dimensions as well as everyday life. They have given impulses to renegotiations of borders, more often than not in relation to aims of establishing security.
As socially constructed spatial structures, borders involve different perspectives and actors creating and negotiating them. This involves political elites in the center of the state, people living close to it or those wanting to cross it for various reasons, e.g. business, travel, seeking refuge. The Russian war in Ukraine, international migration dynamics, pandemics as SARS-CoV-2, climate change and other crises have led to increasingly closed borders and/or extremely selective border regimes to overcome them. At the same time, borders have proven to be places of hope generated by a perceived, expected or constructed better life and security on the “other” side.
Experiencing these border changes makes us aware of the complexity and conflicts of bordering and their differentiated entanglements with questions of being or feeling in/secure or safe. While border research has traditionally emphasized larger geopolitical questions of securitization, its regulations and materialisations, more recent social research has increasingly addressed the level of the everyday, the subjects and embodiments of insecurity and security at borders. This session aims at giving impulse to a differentiated debate of border in/securities and their entanglement with current social and political processes in Central and Eastern Europe.
Along recent and current research, we will discuss the influence of current events on the discursive negotiation, material representation and practices, that make borders in CEE- and how they relate to local as well as global dimensions of security and insecurity. Which actors are involved and in which way do contradicting effects occur in in/securing the border? How do these processes play out across different scales, affected by conflicting concepts and structures of in/securities, e.g. everyday needs vs. national, supranational, global geopolitical security aims? And last but not least, what emotions are connected or evoked with representations and perceptions of (in/secure) borders by different actors?

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