Silencing a migrant past. Neglected genealogies of European self-making in cross-Mediterranean mobilities and entanglements
Regina Römhild (Humboldt Universität zu Berlin)
Paper short abstract:
This paper will show and discuss that, despite of the political silencing of this background, not only migrations but also EU border politics draw and rely on long-standing (post)colonial histories of cross-Mediterranean Eurafrican and Eurasian entanglements.
Paper long abstract:
It is widely held that processes of Othering and bordering are constitutive for the powerful construction of an autonomous, sovereign, and supreme European self. Within these processes, however, the relevance of and dependency on long-standing entanglements, mobilities and exchanges with these 'Others' across these borders are being made invisible. Hence, Othering and bordering can be seen as imperial forms of governing by actively forgetting and demerging the 'familiar' of past circulations and connections. With a view across the Mediterranean, this paper will focus on the paradox of fragmenting the constant flow of migrants and refugees in disconnected instants of 'new arrivals' that seem to require ever 'new' politics of bordering and integration. It is shown that not only migrations but also border politics draw and rely on long-standing (post)colonial histories of cross-Mediterranean Eurafrican and Eurasian entanglements. It will be argued that critical migration and Europeanization studies need to historicize their own conceptions of migration in order to self-critically reflect on their own contributions to the demerging politics of EU-European presentism.