In/visibilities beyond the spectacularisation
Young people, subjectivity and revolutionary border imaginations in the Mediterranean borderscape
in Border images, border narratives
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The chapter examines the spectacularisation of Mediterranean borderscapes evident in the dramatic staging of refugee crises and migrant deaths in the Mediterranean in the media in particular. On the basis of the work of the philosopher Hannah Arendt, this spectacularisation is understood as a part of a ‘politics of in/visibility’ that frames political subjects as either relevant or negligible through processes of making in/visible at the shifting threshold between what is worthy of being seen and what is not, which is evidenced in the limited public visibility and agency of migrants and refugees, as well as of civil society, groups and individuals inhabiting Mediterranean borderscapes. On the basis of collaborative ethnographic research with young people in the Italian/Tunisian borderland addressing their images and narratives of borders, the chapter presents a borderscaping approach aiming to de-spectacularise images and narratives of Mediterranean borderscapes. It shows how mixed collaborative visual methods enable possible ‘tactics’ for negotiating regimes of in/visibility to restore public visibility agency that will allow for new forms of political participation and subjectivity. In this way, Mediterranean borderscapes emerge as a space of political becoming where new forms of performative political participation can be developed.

Border images, border narratives

The political aesthetics of boundaries and crossings

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