French denaturalisation law on the brink of World War II
Adding a historical note to a practice that has recently garnered renewed attention, this chapter looks at the policy of denaturalisation in France at the beginning of World War II. Denaturalisation law as a juridical political discourse centres on the deprivation of citizenship; it draws on security rhetoric in order to rewrite the limits of inclusion and exclusion regarding citizenship and is a means to model the national community. Based on archival material collected at the French National Archives, the chapter argues that denaturalisation law is at the core of the security/mobility dynamic: emphasising a fear of movement on the one hand, and the operationalisation of adaptable juridical practices on the other hand, denaturalisation interrupts our capacity of dissent while fixing the means to govern beyond democratic control. The analysis contributes to a better understanding of the politics of nationality where notions of selfhood and otherness are being shaped, mobilised and transformed.
This chapter introduces the space of inquiry that opens up at the intersection of security and mobility. It begins with briefly setting the stage of the security/mobility dynamic, after which a conceptual exploration follows. Security is regarded as a discourse revolving around threat. Distinct about security today is it being premised on openness which encourages intervention upon and thus regulation of mobility. Mobility is regarded as socially produced motion and concerns the ways in which the fact of displacement is made possible. Attention is then directed at the productive effects of both concepts and their interaction: they bring about particular relations of power, thereby privileging certain forms of security and mobility. The introductory chapter ends with an overview of the structure of the book and the individual chapters.