No Borders: A Movement in the Process of Becoming?

A review-essay of

Natasha King, No Borders: The Politics of Immigration Control and Resistance. London: Zed Books, 2016

by Chris Gilligan

Natasha King’s No Borders focuses on the struggle against Western states’ controls on immigration and immigrants, rather than on the controls themselves. As King puts it, the book is:

not really about border controls, but about how people find ways to practice the freedom of movement despite such controls. It’s a book about practices for free movement, against the border. Because border controls are and have always been resisted … the term ‘migration struggles’ encapsulates both organized struggles by migrants and those in solidarity with them, and daily strategies of refusal. [pp. 2–3; emphasis in original]

No Borders makes two important contributions to migration struggles. Firstly, King reflects on her own experience in the No Borders Movement, and attempts to make explicit the theory underpinning No Borders practice. Secondly, she is honest and does not shy away from identifying limitations to the current stage of the struggles and she tries to think about how we advance the struggle. Sadly, however, she avoids the difficult issue of how we can––and to a large extent, even the question of why we should––end immigration controls and create a world without barriers to the free movement of people.
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Responses to Further Misrepresentations of Kliman’s Critique of Graeberism

Dola and Kliman reply to “El Pelón’s” charges and straw-man arguments

Editors’ Note: The following is a set of replies to “Kliman contra Graeber… et contra Kliman,” posted by the anonymous and pseudonymous “El Pelón” on his blog. The main topic discussed is Andrew Kliman’s “The Make-Believe World of David Graeber,” which was published in With Sober Senses in April. Dola’s initial comment, originally posted on that blog, is first. It is followed by a second comment that Dola posted in reply to El Pelón, and finally by Kliman’s heretofore unpublished response. Spelling errors have been corrected. Kliman explains why he has not posted his response on El Pelón’s blog as follows: “After reading his response to Dola, which was ad hominem and which ‘get[s] the record for not addressing a single point or question,’ as Dola put it, it became clear to me that the author is not discussing the issues in good faith and does not intend to do so.”

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A Reply to Critics of “The Make-Believe World of David Graeber”

Andrew Kliman

A number of people, including David Graeber, have claimed that my article, “The Make-Believe World of David Graeber,” misrepresented him. Most of them have just leveled charges that they didn’t even try to substantiate. Others have mischaracterized what I wrote or have made irrelevant points. The only response to my critique of Graeber that’s worth responding to was posted by “Nate” on May 18 as a comment below the article. It’s a serious piece. My reply thus takes the form of a reply to him, but I hope that it will address the concerns of the other critics as well.

Before getting into that, let me just say that there seem to be a lot of people out there who should read more carefully than they do, especially when they publicly criticize what they think they’ve read. They should avoid claims that an author wrote something when that something is just their own sense of what he or she was getting at. And they should make a lot more distinctions than they seem to make.

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