Spatial brokers and brokered space in post-war transitions
Oliver Walton (University of Bath)
Jonathan Goodhand (SOAS)
Sharri Plonski (SOAS)
Patrick Meehan (SOAS)
Paper short abstract:
This paper brings together critical theories of space, geography and brokerage to understand the agents that fix, subvert, resist and translate border dynamics in post-war transitions.
Paper long abstract:
This paper brings together critical theories of space, geography and brokerage to understand the agents that fix, subvert, resist and translate border dynamics in post-war transitions. Looking specifically at the social productions of the 'margins' and their dynamic relations with different centres of power, the paper examines the inherent contradictions and tensions that emerge as states and subjects attempt to negotiate, navigate and smooth out the ruptures of war and the violence of transition. Drawing on illustrations of political brokers from post-war Sri Lanka and Nepal, we explore 'territorial flexibility', 'spatial fixes' and 'borderscapes', as part of the paradoxes of capitalist flows and territorial logics; and as part of the multiple modes through which power is organized and concretised, as well as distorted, checked and transplanted. These lenses help us to examine borders as inchoate and flexible institutions, made and unmade through the movements and practices of the interlocutors - the brokers - who push, pull and orchestrate the circulation of goods, capital and ideas across and between them.
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