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In/visible—In/secure

Optics of regulation and control

Ieva Jusionyte and Daniel M. Goldstein

—between in/security and in/visibility. On the one hand, security is (pan)optical. To identify threats and manage risks, states and other actors to whom security has been outsourced ( Buur 2005 ; Comaroff and Comaroff 2006 ; Jaffe 2013 ) visualize insecurity

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En-Gendering Insecurities

The Case of the Migration Policy Regime in Thailand

Philippe Doneys

The paper examines the migration policy regime in Thailand using a human security lens. It suggests that insecurities experienced by migrants are partly caused or exacerbated by a migration policy regime, consisting of migration laws and regulations and non-migration related policies and programs, that pushes migrants into irregular forms of mobility and insecure employment options. These effects are worse for women migrants who have fewer resources to access legal channels while they are relegated to insecure employment in the reproductive or informal sectors. Using a gender and human security analysis, therefore, reveals how the migration policy regime, often informed by a restrictive national security approach, can clash with the human security needs of migrants by creating a large pool of unprotected irregular migrants with women occupying the most vulnerable forms of employment. In conclusion, it is suggested that this ‘en-gendering’ of human insecurities could be overcome if gender equality was designed into policies and guided their implementation.

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The Origins and Subjects of Fear for Siberians

Sociological Research in the Regions of Eastern and Western Siberia

Valentin G. Nemirovskiy and Anna V. Nemirovskaya

This paper analyzes feelings of insecurity and fear amongst the population of Siberian regions in the face of various perceived dangers, based on research conducted in the Krasnoiarsk and Altai Territories, Novosibirsk and Omsk Regions, and the Republics of Khakassiia and Buriatiia, in the context of the general Russian situation. Quantitative methods—frequency, correlation, and factor analysis on survey data obtained from formalized face-to-face interviews—are used to gain an understanding of what factors respondents feel are “ugrozhaiushchie zhiznedeiatel'nosti” (activities threatening to social life). Siberians feel especially vulnerable to gender- and age-related discrimination, as well as governmental abuse of power and the threats inherent in economic development: chronic poverty, environmental threats, officials' arbitrariness, and crime and law enforcement authorities themselves. They also feel threatened by the presence of migrant groups and social minorities. However, an internal locus of control reduces their fears of threats to social life activities.

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Rosío Córdova and Hipólito Rodríguez

*Full article is in Spanish

English abstract: Since the 1980s, the different crises that have taken place in the south of Mexico and Central America have raised the migrant flow to the United States. In parallel, these crises have contributed to make the journey for those who want to gain access to the American market more difficult and unsafe. Although legal measures have tried to stop the flow of migrants, in the last decade migrants have faced other kinds of non-legal obstacles that make dangerous their displacement. This article explores the process that has led to conditions of insecurity and vulnerability for migrants. It is focused on the corridor of the Gulf of Mexico, one of the main routes of migration to the territory of the United States.

Spanish abstract: Desde los años ochenta del siglo pasado, diversas crisis económicas han detonado en el sur de México y en Centroamérica el incremento del flujo migratorio hacia EEUU. Colateralmente, las mismas crisis han propiciado la emergencia de circunstancias que hacen más difícil e inseguro el desplazamiento de quienes buscan acceder al mercado de trabajo de ese país. Si bien el crecimiento del flujo ha intentado ser detenido por medio de medidas legales, en la última década los migrantes han encontrado otro tipo de obstáculos no legales que han vuelto sumamente peligroso su tránsito. Este artículo explora el proceso que ha originado condiciones de inseguridad y vulnerabilidad para la población migrante y centra su atención en el corredor del Golfo de México, un territorio por el que pasa una de las principales rutas del movimiento migratorio hacia territorio estadounidense.

French abstract: Dans les années 1980, différentes crises économiques sont survenues dans le sud du Mexique et en Amérique centrale, favorisant ainsi l'essor de la migration vers les États-Unis. Par ailleurs, ces mêmes crises ont conduit à l'émergence de circonstances qui ont rendu difficiles et dangereux les déplacements des individus souhaitant accéder au marché du travail de ce pays. Alors que la tendance première des politiques avait été de restreindre l'essor des flux par des mesures légales, dans la dernière décennie, les migrants feront face à d'autres types d'obstacles non juridiques qui auront pour effet de rendre leur transit extrêmement dangereux. Cet article analyse le processus ayant conduit à l'émergence des conditions d'insécurité et de vulnérabilité chez les migrants et se concentre sur le corridor du golfe du Mexique, reconnu comme étant la principale zone de transit des flux migratoires en direction des Etats-Unis.

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A Phone without Names

Distrust and Duress in Côte d’Ivoire

Kathrin Heitz-Tokpa

normal circumstances (1997: 38–41). Distrust is generally considered the opposite of trust: an expectation that others will act in a malevolent manner ( Govier 1997 ; Hardin 2004 ). This concept of distrust presumes that actors can anticipate insecurity

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“Going vertical” in times of insecurity

Constructing proximity and distance through a Kenyan gated high-rise

Zoë Goodman

. Coping with insecurity in Mombasa: Constructing safety and status through vertical secession A cursory glance at NGO and press reports from around 2014 gives a sense of the cycles of violence in and around Mombasa during the period in which the bulk of

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Elite ethnography in an insecure place

The methodological implications of “studying up” in Pakistan

Rosita Armytage

Lahore University of Management Sciences asked cheekily, “Have you met any of their wives yet?” before erupting into mirthful laughter and answering his own question: “No, of course you haven’t. And you won’t. Their wives are already very insecure, and

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Ellen Bal, Erella Grassiani, and Kate Kirk

This article is based on our own experiences and that of several of our colleagues teaching social and cultural anthropology in different Dutch institutions for higher learning. We focus in particular on teaching and learning in two small liberal arts and science (LAS) colleges, where anthropology makes up part of the social science curriculum and/or is part of the core curriculum. The data collected from our own critical reflections developed during informal discussion and from formal interviews with colleagues, together with literature on recent changes in academia, leads us to argue that neoliberal individualism, shaped by management tactics that constantly measure individual performance and output, is making academia an increasingly insecure place in which to work and study. The consequences of this insecurity include increasing mental health problems among both students and staff, intensifying competition at the expense of collegiality and collaboration and an overall decrease in the quality of academic jobs and teaching. Although the discipline of anthropology can help us better understand our own conditions, the personalisation of problems and the focus on success obscure the anthropological lens, which looks at social and cultural structures of power and depends on critical reflexivity.

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Vincent Lyon-Callo

Corporatisation of universities and restructurings of K-12 schooling in the United States occurred during a period of broad economic, social and political restructurings, which have transformed the lives of middle-class Americans. Community and individual level investments in education are frequently represented as antidotes to increased insecurities confronting these subjects. This paper draws upon my interactions within both the school system and the university in which I work to explore how such practices continue to make sense to students, parents, and policy makers despite the lack of evidence demonstrating that such strategies overcome declining economic security and to suggest possibilities for alternative practices to produce collective mobilisations against inequality.

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Vigilance

On Conflict, Social Invisibility, and Negative Potentiality

Henrik Vigh

This article analyzes the relationship between conflict, social invisibility, and negative potentiality. Taking its empirical point of departure in fieldwork conducted in Belfast, Northern Ireland, and Bissau, Guinea-Bissau, it illuminates the manner in which people orient themselves toward precarious prospects and potentialities. Little attention has been paid to the orientational effects generated by long-term conflict—that is, the way that violence, as an underlying possibility, an imagined oncoming event, influences social life. Moving from the empirical to the theoretical, and from the specific to the general, the article compares two areas of conflict and orientation toward negative potentiality before moving on to a more general discussion of invisibility and potentiality in social life and theory.