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Theory of the Border$
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Thomas Nail

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9780190618643

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2016

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190618643.001.0001

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The US-Mexico Checkpoint

The US-Mexico Checkpoint

Chapter:
(p.202) Chapter 10 The US-Mexico Checkpoint
Source:
Theory of the Border
Author(s):

Thomas Nail

Publisher:
Oxford University Press
DOI:10.1093/acprof:oso/9780190618643.003.0011

This chapter describes the checkpoint border regime at the US-Mexico border. The function of the checkpoint is not to juridically enclose and link increasingly large and unpredictable oscillatory flows, but rather to establish a kind of functional economic equilibrium between rapidly expanding and contracting flows of migration. The checkpoint balances the desire for precarious labor with the reproduction of an atmosphere of perceived insecurity and danger. The historically privileged sites of immigration enforcement—fences, walls, ports of entry, detention cells, and so on—are no longer sufficient to ensure the continuous control and rapid redirection of migrant flows required under contemporary circumstances. The US-Mexico border must now be deployable at any point whatever throughout society.

Keywords:   RFID, passports, biopower, security, deportation, criminalization, migration, checkpoint

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