The Figure of the Migrant – A Roundtable in PhaenEx

I encourage readers to check out the latest issue of PhaenEx: Journal of Existential and Phenomenological Theory and Culture. This issue also includes a roundtable that I curated on Thomas Nail‘s The Figure of the Migrant.

This international ensemble of scholars–Robin Celikates, Daniella Trimboli, Sandro Mezzadra, Todd May, Ladelle McWhorter, Andrew Dilts, and Adriana Novoa–discuss Thomas Nail’s The Figure of the Migrant (Stanford UP, 2015). These scholars represent various disciplines within the academy and divergent methodologies. One thing we share in common, though, is the opinion that the migrant needs to occupy a more significant place within our political theory and policy. Nail’s book is one of kinopolitics, that is, a politics of movement. It provides a kind of theory of social motion. According to Nail, the book offers a remedy to problems in how the migrant is typically theorized, namely that (a) the migrant is understood as a derivative figure in contrast to the stable denizen and (b) the migrant is discussed through the lens of the state. His remedial maneuver mobilizes the potential to understand the figure of the migrant by placing the migrant in the primary position, by offering a political philosophy of the migrant.
AUFS will host a book event featuring more expanded commentaries by these same authors. Vern Cisney will also join us with some of his own reflections on the book. Please join in the conversation by participating in the comments section. The event will begin shortly.