Border images, border narratives

The political aesthetics of boundaries and crossings

Edited by Johan Schimanski and Jopi Nyman

Border images, border narratives


  • eBook

Book Information

  • Format: Hardcover
  • ISBN: 978-1-5261-4626-7
  • Pages: 272
  • Publisher: Manchester University Press
  • Price: £80.00
  • Published Date: January 2021
  • BIC Category: Anthropology, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Human Geography, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Anthropology / Cultural, SOCIAL SCIENCE / Emigration & Immigration, Society & social sciences / Cultural studies, Human Geography, Society & social sciences / Social & cultural anthropology, ethnography, Society & social sciences / Migration, immigration & emigration
  • Series: Rethinking Borders


This interdisciplinary volume explores the role of images and representation in different borderscapes. Written by experienced scholars in border studies, the volume shows how borders, borderscapes, and migration are approached in public and private spheres as a part of the political aesthetics of the border. Claiming that aesthetic images of borders and borderscapes are central to the political negotiation of borders, the volume addresses issues such as encounters with borders in material and digital spaces, migration, and border-crossings.

The contributions explore narrative and images in literary and media texts, documentaries, and border art, as well as borderland identities, migration, and trauma in geographical contexts including Northern Europe, the Mediterranean, Mexican-US borderlands, and Chinese borderlands.


Introduction: images and narratives on the border - Jopi Nyman and Johan Schimanski

Part I: The Border (Forms)
1 Phenomenology of the liminal - Wolfgang Müller-Funk
2 Horizontal vertigo and psychasthenia: border figures of the fantastic - Patricia García

Part II: Living with the Border (Zones)
3 Capturing clouds: imagin(in)g the materiality of digital networks - Holger Pötzsch
4 In/visibilities beyond the spectacularisation: young people, subjectivity, and revolutionary border Imaginations in the Mediterranean borderscape - Chiara Brambilla
5 From heroism to grotesque: the invisibility of border-related trauma narratives in the Finnish-Russian borderlands - Tuulikki Kurki
6 Expanded border imaginaries and aligned border narratives: ethnic minorities and localities in China's border encounters with Myanmar, Laos, and Vietnam - Victor Konrad and Zhiding Hu

Part III: Crossing the Border (Migrations)
7 Borders: tshe topos of/for a post-politics of images? - Anne-Laure Amilhat Szary
8 Some cunning passages in border-crossing narratives: seen and unseen migrants - Stephen F. Wolfe
9 Borderscapes of Calais: images of 'The Jungle' in Breach by Olumide Popoola and Annie Holmes - Jopi Nyman
10 Seasons of migration to the North: borders and images in migration narratives published in Norwegian - Johan Schimanski
11 Performance of memory: testimonies of survival and rescue at Europe's border - Karina Horsti and Ilaria Tucci
Epilogue: border images and narratives: paradoxes, spheres, aesthetics - Johan Schimanski and Jopi Nyman



Johan Schimanski is Professor of Comparative Literature and Head of Research at the Department of Literature, Area Studies and European Languages at the University of Oslo

Jopi Nyman is Professor of English and Vice Dean at the Philosophical Faculty at the University of Eastern Finland

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