Border Culture: Theory, Imagination, Geopolitics

Victor Konrad, Anne-Laure Amilhat Szary | Routledge | 2022

Available for pre-order on December 8th, 2022 and available for order on December 29th, 2022.

This book introduces readers to the cultural imaginings of borders: the in-between spaces in which transnationalism collides with geopolitical cooperation and contestation.

Recent debates about the “refugee crisis” and the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic have politicized culture at and of borders like never before. Border culture is no longer culture at the margins but rather culture at the heart of geopolitics, flows, and experience of the transnational world. Increasingly, culture and borders are everywhere yet nowhere. In border spaces, national narratives and counter-narratives are tested and evaluated, coming up against transnational culture. This book provides an extensive and critical vision of border culture on the move, drawing on numerous examples worldwide and a growing international literature across border and cultural studies. It shows how border culture develops in the human imagination and manifests in human constructs of “nation” and “state”, as well as in transnationalism. By analyzing this new and expanding cultural geography of border landscapes, the book shows the way to a fresh, broader dialogue.

Exploring the nature and meaning of the intersection of border and culture, this book will be an essential read for students and researchers across border studies, geopolitics, geography, and cultural studies.

Authors:

Victor Konrad is Adjunct Research Professor at Carleton University, Canada, and formerly Director of the Canadian-American Center at the University of Maine, USA, and founding Director, Canada-U.S. Fulbright Program.

Anne-Laure Amilhat Szary is Professor at Grenoble-Alpes University, France, and head of the CNRS Pacte research unit, a pluri-disciplinary social sciences research centre.

Border Culture: Theory, Imagination, Geopolitics

Academic Partner – University of Victoria

Jeff Ganohalidoh Corntassel

Dr. Jeff Ganohalidoh Corntassel is a writer, teacher and father from the Cherokee Nation. He is a Professor in Indigenous Studies, and cross-listed Professor in the Political Science Department at the University of Victoria as well as Associate Director of the Centre for Indigenous Research and Community-Led Engagement (CIRCLE). Corntassel is a Co-PI with Dr. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly on the 7-year SSHRC partnership grant entitled “21st Century Borders” and is the lead of Pillar 1 for that grant focusing on Indigenous Internationalism. Jeff’s research and teaching interests focus on “Everyday Acts of Resurgence” and the intersections between Indigenous internationalism, community resurgence, climate change, gender, and community well-being. situates his work at the grassroots with many Indigenous led community-based programs and initiatives ranging from local food movement initiatives, land-based renewal projects to gendered colonial violence and protection of homelands. He is currently completing work for his forthcoming book on Sustainable Self-Determination, which examines Indigenous climate justice, food security, and gender-based resurgence.

Jeff Ganohalidoh Corntassel

Undergraduate Research Assistant

Giulia Gagliano

BIG | Jean Monnet Human-to-Military Security Database Project – University of Victoria

Giulia Gagliano (she/her) is a recently graduated honours Political Science student with a Minor in Gender Studies and a Certificate in French Language and Cultural Proficiency. Her primary research interests are issues of nationalism, migration, and border politics, in particular, analyzed through a critical intersectional lens. As a recipient of the Jamie Cassels Undergraduate Research Award and the J. Alan Baker Memorial Scholarship, she completed an honours thesis that critically analyzes the Italian nationalist anti-immigrant discourses within the broader socio-political context of the 2015-2016 EU Migrant Crisis. In the summer of 2022, she is doing an internship at the European Commission’s Migration and Home Affairs working in the Anti-Trafficking unit.

Giulia Gagliano

Policy Partner – Headquartered in Germany

Transfrontier Euro-Institut Network

Primary Contact: Ann Thevenet

The Transfrontier Euro-Institut Network (TEIN), formed in 2010, now brings together 15 partners from 9 border regions in Europe. Its unique feature is that it consists of universities, research institutes and training centres, which are dedicated to the practical business of cross-border cooperation in Europe.TEIN is led by the Euro-Institut, created in 1993 in Kehl/Strasbourg on the French/German/Swiss border with the aim of facilitating cross-border cooperation.

TEIN partners come from maritime borders, old European borders, new eastern borders, post-conflict borders and external borders. Because of this, TEIN is able to measure the need for capacity building in cross-border cooperation throughout Europe. All members have subscribed to a common charter to ensure the organization of the network and the quality of its output.

TEIN’s objective is to build capacity in cross-border contexts to strengthen European integration. To that end, TEIN Members follow the aim of facilitating cross-border cooperation and providing practical solutions to European cross-border issues.

In that respect, TEIN Partners:

  • Develop training and mentoring that is ‘fit for purpose’ for cross-border issues and in  cross-border contexts;
  • Capitalize on learning from the different regional initiatives;
  • Work on new products such as transferable training modules, methods, tools
  • Produce relevant research
  • Increase knowledge and awareness of cross-border issues (at local, regional, national and European level)

TEIN role in the 21st Century Borders project

 In the framework of the 21st century borders project, TEIN will organize one conference per year (6 during the whole project) in the framework of the pillar 1 looking inside of states at how minorities (indigenous) awareness and resurgences along with increasingly prevalent politics of nationhood and nationalism affect, fragment, and re-draft intergovernmental relations. We will look at this through different angles (historical, political, legal, geographical, cultural etc.) in a transdisciplinary approach and at different European borders.

Transfrontier Euro-Institut Network

Graduate Student Fellow (PhD)

Claude Beaupré

Borders in Globalization | Jean Monnet Network on Post-Truth Politics, Nationalism and the (De-) Legitimation of European Integration.

Claude Beaupré is currently a joint Ph.D. candidate in Political Science at the University of Victoria, Canada, and Contemporary History at the University of Strasbourg, France. She is a BIG Graduate Student Fellow (PhD) and a Research Assistant and Conference Coordinator with the Jean Monnet Network on Post-Truth Politics, Nationalism and the (De-) Legitimation of European Integration.

Her current doctoral research is on the influence of media in contemporary Canadian migration discourse. She has previously received Masters from York University in Public and International Affairs and from Science Po Strasbourg in History of International Relations. She focused her Master Thesis on the Canadian Media coverage of the Refugee and Migrant Crisis in Europe, 2015-2016. She also holds an honours Bachelor in International Studies from Glendon College, York University.

Claude Beaupré

21st Century Borders: Emergent Challenges Within & Among States

Program Overview

The 21st Century Borders grant is a seven-year SSHRC Partnership Grant. The research program builds off the work of the previous Borders in Globalization SSHRC Partnership Grant (2013-2020) which sought to understand the changing nature of borders through six thematic areas in order to document how state-centred and territorially-fixated research limits our understanding of borders. 21st Century Borders builds off the work done in the first grant with the goal of exploring and advancing the required epistemological shift from a state- centric and territorial logic to nodal and mobile logics that focus on both the internal and external forces that challenge the territorial integrity of states. While the first grant revealed the limitations of state-centred and territorially bound understanding of borders, this grant seeks to understand how we, as academics and policymakers, can move beyond that model.

We do this by focusing on three interrelated themes:

  • Pillar 1: Looking inside of states at how Indigenous awareness and resurgences, along with increasingly prevalent politics of nationhood and nationalism, affect, fragment, and re-draft intergovernmental relations.
  • Pillar 2: Examining the relationship between bordering processes and states’ territoriality, with particular attention paid to examining trade flows and human mobility – both within a states’ international boundaries and across international and transnational legal and regulatory regimes.
  • Comparing how the politics in both the above-mentioned cases affect the geopolitics of borders across global regimes.

Program Structure

The grant itself is comprised of two parallel research pillars. Pillar one, led by Jeff Corntassel, and pillar two, led by Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly. While these two pillars work parallel to each other within the grant, the conceptual knowledge base and program understandings will flow between the two pillars and through into country specific case-studies. The two vertical pillars are cross-sectioned by two overarching themes: ecology and security. These themes will address issues of both ecology and security from within the contexts of the two primary pillars. Additionally, partners in the grant may choose to use their expertise to focus on country-specific case studies.

Pillar 1

Nationhood & Nationalism

Pillar one explores how claims of nationhood and nationalism exist in the Indigenous and regionalist experiences in borderlands. There is a growing body of literature that examines Indigenous nationhood claims and another, separate, body literature that looks at regionalist and nationalist claims in Europe. The goal of this pillar is to bridge the gap between these two literatures and explore how claims of nationhood and nationalist claims are similar, how they are different, and how they factor into claims of Indigenous self-determination. Through the work done here, this project examines ways that Indigenous nations, communities, and peoples challenge the territoriality of states and other patriarchal institutions in order to generate new understandings of how Indigenous relationships develop and persist beyond boundaries. By interrogating terms such as nationhood, international, self-determination, and borders, this project seeks to advance a deeper understanding of how these terms and relationships are viewed from diverse Indigenous perspectives.

Pillar 2

Territory & Connectivity

While pillar one deals with issues of territory, pillar two deals with issues of human mobility and trade flows by identifying and examining the instruments and infrastructures of connectivity. This includes structures, regulations, and functions of borders. Research occurring in this pillar may focus on issues such as pre-border clearance mechanisms, the externalization of borders, state-to-state security agreements, integrated border management regimes, strategies for preserving life in cross-border regions during crises. (List is not exhaustive and new projects will be reviewed by the academic and international advisory boards annually).

Partnership Composition

21st Century Borders is funded by a seven-year Social Science and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Partnership Grant. In addition to funding from SSHRC, our academic partners contribute matching funding and our non-academic partners provide cash and in-kind support for research and knowledge mobilization activities. This project is directed by Dr. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly at the University of Victoria (Victoria, Canada) and co-lead by Dr. Jeffrey Corntassel (University of Victoria). The academic partnership consists of eight Canadian university partners: Carleton University, École Nationale d’Administration Publique, Royal Military College of Canada, Trent University, Université du Québec à Montréal, Laval, Flemming College, and the University of Victoria; and six international university partners: Radboud University (The Netherlands), Université de Grenoble (France), University of Southern Denmark, South Asia University (India); Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), and Western Washington University.

Our policy partners include: the Canada Border Services Agency, the Pacific NorthWest Economic Region (USA/Canada), the Association of European Border Regions (Europe), the World Customs Organization (Brussels), Transfrontier Euro-Institut Network – TIEN (Europe), Mission Opérationnelle Transfrontalière – M.O.T (France).

Research Affiliates

The 21st Century Borders research partnerships includes a number of scholars from around the world working with us on a variety of different projects. This list is updated regularly as we add new projects and expand the partnership.

Aileen Espiritu (UiT The Arctic University of Norway); Alan Bersin (Harvard University); Alex Buhk (Victoria University of Wellington); Amael Cattaruzza (Institut Français de Géopolitique); Budd Hall (University of Victoria); Can Mutlu (Acadia University); Daniel Meier (PACTE); Eve Tuck (University of Toronto); Evert Lindquist (University of Victoria); Fabienne Leloup (UCLouvain); Francisco Lara-Valencia (Arizona State University); Frédérique Berrod (Université de Strasbourg); Glen Coulthard (University of British Columbia); Guadalupe Correo Cabrera (George Mason University); Heidi Stark (University of Victoria); Irasema Coronado (Arizona State University); Isabel Altamirano-Jiménez (University of Alberta); Jamie Ferrill (Charles Stuart University); Katy Hayward (Queen’s University Belfast); Michelle Daigle (University of British Columbia); Mirza Zulfiqur Rahman (Institute of Chinese Studies – Delhi); Naomi Chi (Hakkaido University); Said Saddiki (Université Sidi Mohamed Ben Abdallah); Simon Dalby (Wilfrid Laurier University); Tamara Krawchenko (University of Victoria); Whitney Lackenbauer (University of Waterloo).

Funding Partners

BIG and the EU Network @ The Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference

San Diego, USA | April 24-26, 2019

The Borders in Globalization and EU Network research programs are using the Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference to showcase its own research and to highight what we have learned in the past six years. BIG has composed eleven panels for the ABS Conference; panels that will feature international colleagues, Canadian leads, and students from across our program. Several of the panels are co-organized and co-funded by our Jean Monnet Network Comparing and Contrasting EU Border and Migration Policies, thanks to generous funding from the Erasmus+ Programme of the European Commission.

The conference convenes April 24 – April 26 at the Manchester Hyatt in downtown San Diego, CA.

Full ABS Program

Featured Panels

Lessons and Debates Emerging from Borders in Globalization
Panel 16: Thursday 1:00 – 2:30, Coronado Ballroom D

Chair: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussants: Birte Wassenberg, University of Strasbourg, James Scott, University of Eastern Finland

“Developing and Applying the BIG Analytical Frame: Challenges for National Case Studies”
Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“Territoriality to A-Territoriality – What Does this Mean for Border Studies?”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, University of Victoria

“Global Sustainability?”
Simon Dalby, Wilfrid Laurier University

“Managing Cross-Border Economic and Human Movements: Fluids, Spaghetti, Rebar”
Geoffrey E. Hale, University of Lethbridge

“Border Culture in Globalization”
Victor Konrad, Carleton University

Lessons and Debates Emerging from Borders in Globalization
Panel 25: Thursday 4:30 – 6:00, Coronado Ballroom B

Chair: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussants: James Scott, University of Eastern Finland & Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“Quebec: Fontière sous tension”
Élisabeth Vallet, University of Quebec Montreal

“Security Beyond the Border: The Globalization of Trends and Patterns in Border Management”
Christian Leuprecht, Royal Military College of Canada

“Borders in Arctic Context”
Heather Nicol, Trent University

“Borders, Globalization and History”
Randy Widdis, University of Regina

Comparing Countries’ Borders
Panel 52: Friday 4:30 – 6:00, Coronado Ballroom D

Moderator: Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly

“Canada: Between Territoriality and A-Territoriality?”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly and Michael Carpenter, University of Victoria

“Denmark, Trapped in Territoriality?”
Martin Klatt, University of Southern Denmark

“Estonia”
Margit Saare, Western Washington University and University of Victoria

“French Border, A Side Story?”
Anne Laure Amilhat-Szary, Grenoble-Alpes University

“The Dutch Borders as Barriers or Creative Resources”
Martin van der Velde, Radboud University

“Northern Ireland”
Kate Hayward, Queens Belfast University

Roundtable: European Union Border, Migration, and Security Policies in Comparative Perpsective
Panel 57: Saturday 8:00 – 9:30

Moderator: Akihiro Iwashita, University of Hokkaido
Discussant: Victor Konrad, Carleton University

“Japan’s Borders in the Contemporary World”
Ted Boyle, Kyushu University

“Comparing European Union Migration, Borders and Security Policies with Canada and Japan”
Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly, University of Victoria

“Politics of Mobility in East Asia: Focusing on Recent Revision to Japan’s Immigration Act”
Naomi Chi, Hokkaido University

“Border Control and Security at the EU’s External Borders”
Can Mutlu, Acadia University

“Refugees, the Rise of Exclusionary Nationalism, and the Politics of Borders”
Oliver Schmidtke, University of Victoria

“The Refugee Crisis and the End of the Myth of a Europe Without Borders in European Integration and Cross-border Cooperation”
Birte Wassenberg, University of Strasbourg

BIG and the EU Network @ The Association for Borderlands Studies Annual Conference

Co-Principle Investigator | Pillar 1: Indigenous Internationalism & Nationhood

Jeff Corntassel

2021-Present

Dr. Jeff Ganohalidoh Corntassel is a writer, teacher and father from the Cherokee Nation. He is a Professor in Indigenous Studies, and cross-listed Professor in the Political Science Department at the University of Victoria as well as Associate Director of the Centre for Indigenous Research and Community-Led Engagement (CIRCLE). Corntassel is a Co-PI with Dr. Emmanuel Brunet-Jailly on the 7-year SSHRC partnership grant entitled “21st Century Borders” and is the lead of Pillar 1 for that grant focusing on Indigenous Internationalism.  Jeff’s research and teaching interests focus on “Everyday Acts of Resurgence” and the intersections between Indigenous internationalism, community resurgence, climate change, gender, and community well-being.  situates his work at the grassroots with many Indigenous led community-based programs and initiatives ranging from local food movement initiatives, land-based renewal projects to gendered colonial violence and protection of homelands. He is currently completing work for his forthcoming book on Sustainable Self-Determination, which examines Indigenous climate justice, food security, and gender-based resurgence.

Jeff Corntassel

Publication Highlights

AlterNative An International Journal of Indigenous Peoples

Everyday Indigenous Resurgence During COVID-19: A Social Media Situation Report

For Indigenous Nations on Turtle Island (Canada and the USA), the onset of COVID-19 has exacerbated food insecurity and adverse health outcomes. This situation report examines ways that Indigenous peoples on Turtle Island have met the challenges of the pandemic in their communities and their daily practices of community resurgence through social media. Drawing on the lived experiences of four Indigenous land-based practitioners, we found that social media can offer new forms of connection for Indigenous peoples relating to our foods, lands, waterways, languages, and our living histories.

Decolonization: Indigeneity, Education & Society

Re-envisioning Resurgence: Indigenous Pathways to Decolonization and Sustainable Self-determination

By drawing on several comparative examples of resurgence from Cherokees in Kituwah, Lekwungen protection of camas, the Nishnaabe-kwewag “Water Walkers” movement, and Kanaka Maoli (Native Hawaiian) revitalization of kalo, this article provides some insights into contemporary decolonization movements. The politics of distraction is operationalized here as a potential threat to Indigenous homelands, cultures and communities, and the harmful aspects of the rights discourse, reconciliation, and resource extraction are identified, discussed, and countered with Indigenous approaches centered on responsibilities, resurgence and relationships. Overall, findings from this research offer theoretical and applied understandings for regenerating Indigenous nationhood and restoring sustainable relationships with Indigenous homelands.

International Review of Education

Educate to Perpetuate: Land-based Pedagogies and Community Resurgence

The authors of this article examine ways in which land-based pedagogies can challenge colonial systems of power at multiple levels, while being critical sites of education and transformative change. Drawing on a multi-component study of community practices in the Cherokee Nation conducted by the second author, this article examines strategies for fostering what have been termed “land-centred literacies” as pathways to community resurgence and sustainability. The findings from this research have important implications for Indigenous notions of sustainability, health and well-being and ways in which Indigenous knowledge can be perpetuated by future generations.

“States of Exception”: EU’s Relationship with De-facto States and Implications on Sovereignty, Citizenship, and Identity

Jay Ramasubramanyam | BIG Research Reports | #64

From ‘Brexit’ that resulted in the UK voting to leave the European Union to construction of border walls between EU states, where none existed before, in an attempt to curb refugees entering respective nations, efforts to assert national identity and pseudo-nationalism, has been on the rise in the recent years, due to perceived external threats. In the midst of such crises that have been framed as supposed threats to the integrity and sovereignty of individual EU states, fissures have emerged in the supranational identity that has often set apart the EU from the rest of the world. In the midst of such guardedness, where do states with limited recognition feature in EU’s assertion of regional sovereignty and identity? This paper will analyze the relationship between the EU and states with limited recognition or de-facto states and its implications on issues of sovereignty, identity and legal personality of such unrecognized states. I will attempt to examine the European community’s perception of a state’s validity and its impacts, in addition to analyzing whether “citizenship” in “non-states” is contingent upon their recognition by other states and whether individuals living in such states risk being rendered stateless.

Jay Ramasubramanyam

Final Conference – BIG & EU Network Panels @ the Annual ABS Conference

San Diego, USA | April 24-27, 2019

Borders in Globalization and the EU Network Comparing and Contrasting EU Borders: Are They Exemplary? hosted its final outreach activity in conjunction with the Association for Borderlands Studies’ Annual Conference in San Diego, CA April 24-27, 2019. BIG colleagues submitted a series of panels and presented their findings at the ABS conference. This connected BIG’s findings to broader discussions about borders and border studies.

The organizing theme for the 2019 annual conference was BORDERS HERE, THERE, EVERYWHERE – these are non-contiguous borders such as airports, seaports, but also logistics platforms and transportation networks that straddle past national physical boundaries, state and provincial boundary lines whether they are territorial or even legal/regulatory limits, even sometimes virtual; they are connecting the local with the global nexus; Some of them are a-territorial in nature (an exception in the past – the new norm today),  and often, they are superimposing themselves onto traditional territorial borders, which remain prominent but are at the same time profoundly transformed. These affect the flows of goods, and also human mobility occasionally in murderous ways. They are here, there, and possibly, everywhere, and can be found in the middle of cities miles away from international boundary lines.

This theme encompasses a wide range of topics and approaches; it enhances the continuing theoretical challenges of defining what borders are and how they work.

Are specific disciplinary approaches more or less able to address fundamental theoretical questions regarding borders in globalization? What is the role of comparative approaches and interdisciplinarity? Are borders only vacillatingmobile and also in motion?  Are borders resources, or otherwise ‘suturing’, but alsoborderscaping?  Both imagined and socially constructed, both hard or soft, or possibly regulatory, virtual and invisible, what are they?

Are borders actually changing in the 21st century? Are they historically and culturally contextual? How are they impacting environmental and sustainability issues?  How are flows of trade and human mobilities adapting to borders and borders in globalization? And, are borders and borders in globalization evolving to address major trade flows and human migration, and also issues of security? Is there a new governance of borders in globalization?

How are border regions and borderlands, such as the United States – Mexico border region (where our conference will be held), affected by those borders? Are border regions and borderlands the ideal laboratories to understand changes due to globalization but also human migration and concurrent transnationalism?

Please see the Western Social Sciences Association or the Association for Borderlands Studies for more details.

 

Final Conference - BIG & EU Network Panels @ the Annual ABS Conference