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Open access

Rachel Lewis

This article examines the navigation and enactment of vigilance in the UK citizenship regime. Drawing on data from a four-year research project in a UK city, including observations of citizenship ceremonies and interviews with institutional actors and citizen-candidates, it sees vigilance as a central feature of the naturalization process, with watchfulness oriented toward three key areas: the bureaucratic precision, the linguistic proficiency, and the commitment to the nation evidenced by the citizen-candidate. It sees the navigation of anxious vigilance among all actors—state, institutional, and citizen-candidates—but argues that this is directed unevenly, with the state’s securitizing gaze particularly maintained upon those racialized as Other. Reading citizenship in domopolitical terms as a technology through which the securitized state can enact its bordering practices, it sees the vigilance enacted in the naturalization process as productive: as working to realize the legitimacy of the state and the Good citizen, to articulate and exclude from membership those deemed illegitimate, and, ultimately, to curtail possibilities for solidarity.

Open access

Nikolai Goncharov


This article proposes a view of the Allaikhovskii district (Republic of Sakha (Yakutia)) located in the Russian Arctic as a “laboratory” in which various actors (the state, regional authorities, local communities) have been actively working on the production of food security. Based on both field experience and published literature, I describe a multilayered process of foodscape formation in this region. The unique elements that characterize the foodscape of the district are the nonautomated modes of food production caused by territorial isolation, unsatisfactory infrastructure, the high price of food delivery, and environmental changes. All these factors create fragile foodscape; the life of local residents can be characterized as “being with risk,” which inspires certain compensatory measures implemented by different layered actors. The impossibility of creating a consistent and reliable system of subsistence thus reinforces a “laboratory” regime of permanent experiments to maintain food security. The Arctic laboratory is not located in separate place with specialists (as in the case discussed by Bruno Latour) but distributed throughout the actors and their activities connected with their lifestyles in this specific territory.

Open access

Bato-Dalai Ochirov

A Buryat Activist at the Turn of the Twentieth Century

Robert W. Montgomery


In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries, a native intelligentsia took shape among Siberia's Buryat Mongols that, combining indigenous and Russian influences, pursued cultural survival alongside social, political, and economic modernization. One of its significant, yet relatively unsung, members was Bato-Dalai Ochirov (1874 or 1875–1913). He is best known as the only Buryat ever to serve in the Russian State Duma (in the short-lived Second Duma in 1907). Yet over the course of his short life, Ochirov also was an administrator, political activist, author, philanthropist, and supporter of culture and science. This article provides an overview of Ochirov's life and seeks to elucidate his worldview, which stressed the defense of Buryat interests using the possibilities available within the existing autocratic order.

Open access

Between Intention and Implementation

Recent Legal Reforms on Child Marriage in Contemporary Malaysia

Nurul Huda Mohd. Razif

In 2018, news of a 41-year-old Malay man’s marriage to a Thai girl of 11 as his third wife broke out in the Malaysian media, catalysing nationwide concerns on the state of affairs of child marriage in Malaysia. This article analyses the news reports on this child marriage scandal and draws on my own long-term ethnographic fieldwork studying marriage and intimacy in the state of Kelantan to examine the ensuing public and religious debates concerning the amendment of Malaysia’s Islamic family law enactments. I demonstrate that state- and federal-level efforts at curbing child marriage have failed largely due to the lack of consensus amongst the religious and political elite, as well as members of the Muslim community, on what the purpose of marriage is, who – and whose interests – it is meant to protect, and what measures should be implemented to prevent its abuse. Furthermore, child marriage in Malaysia has been ideologically sustained by a rhetoric of ‘masculinist protectionism’ in which men justify their marriage to young girls as an act of care and benevolence to mask a reality of coercion and violence. However, legal reform on child marriage will not only be ineffectual but also inadequate if it is not enforced in tandem with other initiatives such as seeking poverty eradication in rural regions; looking at the feasibility of contracting eloped marriages in Southern Thailand; and carefully reconsidering Malay adat and Islamic norms promoting young and early marriage as alternatives to prolonged periods of courtship.

Open access

Beyond debt and equity

Dissecting the red herring and a path forward for normative critiques of finance

Aaron Z. Pitluck


 A recurring theme in academic, moralizing, and religious discourses laments the individual and societal perils of debt and praises equity. Contemporary Islamic banking and finance is one conspicuous example. This article recontextualizes this conversation by demonstrating that since the 1980s financial practitioners have been interpreting debt and equity as increasingly illegible cognitive schemas that nonetheless retain their historical and moral connotations. This line of argumentation suggests that normatively contrasting debt and equity is a red herring—a literary device and theoretical construct that misleads and distracts from the fundamental discussion of what constitutes salubrious or odious finance. Little will change in social life if we seek to replace “debt” with “equity.” Rather, since all financial instruments describe social relationships, our conversation should turn to normatively proscribing the kinds of financial instruments that match our normative values for contractual relationships.

Open access

‘Blood Follows Blood’

Dimensions of Life Plurality among the Luo of Western Kenya

Kennedy Opande, Washington Onyango-Ouma, and Wilfred Subbo

Among the Luo of Kenya, blood carries potencies that make life. The common saying ‘blood follows blood’ embodies this flow of potencies between different entities (human and non-human) that creates life and changes life-courses. The materiality of blood is agentive here, in the sense that it produces diverse human conditions. Examples are given specifically from life-cycle rituals, prayers, and healing practices of a Luo community in western Kenya. Ultimately, the sentient agency of blood defines the essence and dimensions of life in this case. Our focus on the conditions and processes that make life is contrasted with culturalist approaches, which misrecognize life plurality.

Open access

Book Forum

Francio Guadeloupe, Black Man in the Netherlands: An Afro-Antillean Anthropology (Jackson: University of Mississippi Press, 2022)

Dastan Abdali, Charissa Granger, Marleen de Witte, Basile Ndjio, Dave Ramsaran, Miriyam Aouragh, and Francio Guadeloupe

Francio Guadeloupe, Black Man in the Netherlands: An Afro-Antillean Anthropology (Jackson: University of Mississippi Press, 2022)

Open access

Ellen A. Ahlness

Once Upon the Permafrost: Knowing Culture and Climate Change in Siberia, Susan Alexandra Crate. (Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 2021), x + 327 pp. ISBN: 978-0-8165-4155-3.

Open access

Carrie Ann Benjamin, Heike Drotbohm, Carolin Fischer, Witold Klaus, Alexander Kondakov, Annika Lems, Yelena Li, Nina Sahraoui, and Ioana Vrăbiescu

ADVENTURE CAPITAL: Migration and the Making of an African Hub in Paris Julie Kleinman. 2019. Oakland, CA: University of California Press. 224 pages. ISBN 9780520304406 (hardback); ISBN 9780520304413 (paperback).

PAPER TRAILS: Migrants, Documents, and Legal Insecurity Sarah B. Horton and Josiah Heyman, eds. 2020. Durham, NC: Duke University Press. 264 pages. ISBN 9781478008453 (paperback).

ARC OF THE JOURNEYMAN: Afghan Migrants in England Nichola Khan. 2020. Minneapolis, MN: University of Minnesota Press. 288 pages. ISBN 9781517909628 (hardback).

EU MIGRATION AGENCIES: The Operation and Cooperation of FRONTEX, EASO, and EUROPOL David Fernández-Rojo. 2021. Cheltenham: Edward Elgar. 272 pages. ISBN 9781839109331.

Queer Migration and Asylum in Europe ed. Richard C. M. Mole. 2021. London: UCL Press. 262 pages. ISBN 9781787355811.

FINDING WAYS THROUGH EUROSPACE: West African Movers Re-Viewing Europe from the Inside Joris Schapendonk. 2020. New York: Berghahn. 230 pages. ISBN 9781789206807 (hardback).

ILLEGAL: How America's Lawless Immigration Regime Threatens Us All Elizabeth F. Cohen. 2020. New York: Basic Books. 272 pages. ISBN-13 9781541699847 (hardback).

THE OUTSIDE: Migration as Life in Morocco Alice Elliot. 2021. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press. 204 pages. ISBN 9780253054739 (hardback).

WASTELANDS: Recycled Commodities and the Perpetual Displacement of Ashkali and Romani Scavengers Eirik Saethre. 2020. Oakland, CA: University of California Press. 252 pages. ISBN 9780520368491.

Open access

Andrea R. Olinger, Alexander Williams, and Davydd J. Greenwood

Barbara Bassot (2020), The Research Journal: A Reflective Tool for Your First Independent Research Project. Bristol: Policy Press, 188 pp., ISBN: 978-1-4473-5278-5

David J. Staley (2019), Alternative Universities: Speculative Design for Innovation in Higher Education. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 268pp., ISBN: 978-1-4214-2741-6

Keyan G. Tomaselli (2021), Contemporary Campus Life: Transformation, Manic Managerialism and Academentia. Cape Town: Best Red, 245pp., ISBN: 978-1-928246-26-8