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Surfacing Failed Asylees' Agency: Relational Forms of Political Authority in International Spaces (or Stories of Marginality in-Their-National Spaces?)

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This paper is about surfacing political agency in the interstices of the Finnish body politics of asylum: showing how its practices make bodily surfaces and how alternative forms of political authority emanate from bodies. Relying on Jean-Luc Nancy’s ontology of the body, I ask what are the kinds of political agency that may arise in people often considered as abjective subjectivities in the spaces of the international? Deriving from interviews conducted with failed asylum seekers as well as with asylum officials, mental health workers and legal representatives, I shed light on agencies and resistances (as forms of political authority) embedded in asylum processes. The interviews and ethnographic data show failed asylum-seekers taking control over their lives (through voice, movement or the very body), not as separate subjects, but in relation to their political surroundings and others. In a way, failed asylees produce and practice their own politics that both takes part in and escapes the political authority of national body politics. By exploring political authority in unexpected situations (from below, underneath and beyond the nation-state), the focus is on surfacing the intertwining and -meshing of international, national and personal.

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polit (255), bodi (248), fail (83), agenc (82), asylum (76), relat (75), nanci (72), asyle (49), mean (46), soran (46), agent (44), pp (43), seeker (37), voic (35), one (35), communiti (30), subject (29), space (28), other (27), ontolog (27), way (27),
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Name: International Studies Association Annual Conference "Global Governance: Political Authority in Transition"
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http://www.isanet.org


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URL: http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p501715_index.html
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MLA Citation:

Puumala, Eeva. "Surfacing Failed Asylees' Agency: Relational Forms of Political Authority in International Spaces (or Stories of Marginality in-Their-National Spaces?)" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association Annual Conference "Global Governance: Political Authority in Transition", Le Centre Sheraton Montreal Hotel, MONTREAL, QUEBEC, CANADA, Mar 16, 2011 <Not Available>. 2014-11-26 <http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p501715_index.html>

APA Citation:

Puumala, E. , 2011-03-16 "Surfacing Failed Asylees' Agency: Relational Forms of Political Authority in International Spaces (or Stories of Marginality in-Their-National Spaces?)" Paper presented at the annual meeting of the International Studies Association Annual Conference "Global Governance: Political Authority in Transition", Le Centre Sheraton Montreal Hotel, MONTREAL, QUEBEC, CANADA Online <APPLICATION/PDF>. 2014-11-26 from http://citation.allacademic.com/meta/p501715_index.html

Publication Type: Conference Paper/Unpublished Manuscript
Review Method: Peer Reviewed
Abstract: This paper is about surfacing political agency in the interstices of the Finnish body politics of asylum: showing how its practices make bodily surfaces and how alternative forms of political authority emanate from bodies. Relying on Jean-Luc Nancy’s ontology of the body, I ask what are the kinds of political agency that may arise in people often considered as abjective subjectivities in the spaces of the international? Deriving from interviews conducted with failed asylum seekers as well as with asylum officials, mental health workers and legal representatives, I shed light on agencies and resistances (as forms of political authority) embedded in asylum processes. The interviews and ethnographic data show failed asylum-seekers taking control over their lives (through voice, movement or the very body), not as separate subjects, but in relation to their political surroundings and others. In a way, failed asylees produce and practice their own politics that both takes part in and escapes the political authority of national body politics. By exploring political authority in unexpected situations (from below, underneath and beyond the nation-state), the focus is on surfacing the intertwining and -meshing of international, national and personal.


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