Civilized Borders: A Study of Israel’s New Crossing Administration
Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography, Vol. 43, No. 2, pp. 264-295, March 2011
33 Pages Posted: 29 Nov 2011 Last revised: 3 Apr 2015
Date Written: 2011
At Israel’s new border crossings with the West Bank, modernization has become the buzz-word: not only referring to modernized mechanical means – a Wall, newly designed crossings, and micro-mechanics such as turnstiles, signs, and fences – but also to new and sophisticated scientific technologies, such as sensor machines and scanners, and to modernized means of identification, such as advanced computer systems and biometric cards. This paper considers the transformation of the Israel-West Bank border to be a result of four major processes: reterritorialization, bureaucratization, neoliberalization, and de-humanization. I utilize in-depth interviews with top military and state officials and with human rights activists as well as a series of participatory observations to explore the on-the-ground implications of the borders’ transformation.
Keywords: borders, Israel/Palestine, Thing theory, neoliberalism, bureaucratization, territorialization, regulation of movement
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