This issue begins with an article section, demonstrating the analytical power of borderlands and lived experience as frameworks for problematizing common presuppositions about nation-states and territorial boundaries; Virpi Kaisto, Olga Brednikova, and Kristiina Korjonen-Kuusipuro explore everyday-ordinary constructions of borderlander identity at the Finnish–Russian border. Then, we present a special section that challenges European anti-migrant politics, featuring an introduction by guest editors Kenneth Horvath, Elise Pape, Catherine Delcroix, and Lena Inowlocki, and four original research articles. First, Stefania Adriana Bevilacqua and Daniel Bertaux show that small European villages facilitate more robust integration for migrants seeking better lives. Then, Monika Salzbrunn goes into cases of artivism—activism through art—that resist anti-immigrant politics via music and fashion. Rosa Gatti, in her article, challenges the categories of citizenship and teases out the tensions of migrant women wielding national citizenship to cross borders and better their lives. The special section concludes with an in-depth case study by Abdoulaye Ngom that chronicles the multiple (and unsuccessful) attempts of a Senegalese family to reach Europe by regular and irregular means.
Following the articles, we are thrilled to introduce a new section to our journal—policy. Until now, there has not been space dedicated to making border scholarship more accessible to policymakers and other professionals whose work may benefit from the research of border studies. Starting now, each issue of BIG_Review will contain a policy section, edited by Alan Bersin, Ben Rohrbaugh, and Edwin Hodge. Our first installment features two illustrative policy briefs, one focused on borders and culture, the other on borders and climate change, both written by section co-editor Edwin Hodge.
The art sections of this issue each further disrupt the realities of international boundaries. In the centre portfolio, selected by Chief Editor Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, artist and professor Ian Howard meticulously structures insights into some of the hardest and most iconic international barriers around the world—through photo, prose, video, and frottage—in a unique collection he calls Situational Realism. Then, poetry editor Natasha Sardzoska shares three poems from a recent collection by Arian Leka, in which the poet vivifies the harsh realities of forced migration through truthful—if not factual—scenarios.
Last but not least, our art sections conclude with a three-part installation by Paulo Nazareth, curated by editor Elisa Ganivet; Nazareth’s performative and bodily works unearth the gritty underside of borders, blurring the lines between satire and documentary along the way. Finally, the issue closes with our Film & Book Review section, featuring entries by M. Derya Canpolat, M. Mustafa Iyi , and Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly