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Cover Security Studies: Critical Perspectives

19. Borders and mobility  

Benjamin J. Muller

This chapter reviews the security politics of borders and mobility. Borders and bordering practices—such as surveillance, ID technology, and the virtual border—are presented as essential to security. Conversely, forms of mobility are framed as threats, and in the process mobile actors are regularly rendered precarious and dehumanized. How should we understand borders as spaces of contestation? To what extent are borders and mobility about the production and negotiation of belonging and precarity, sometimes violently, along hierarchies of class, gender, race, sexuality, indigeneity, and territoriality? The chapter focuses on territorial sovereign borders and demonstrates the extent to which borders, bordering practices, and boundary making are framed as ‘belonging’ and mobility well beyond territoriality.


Cover Contemporary Terrorism Studies

25. Terrorism, Counter-Terrorism, and Technology  

Peter Lehr

This chapter looks at the role of technology in the battle against terrorism. Technology was quickly identified as such a potential ‘silver bullet’ following the 9/11 event. This showed that border controls alone are insufficient to prevent terrorist incidents. Technology was able to help with biometrics, data mining, and acquisition to identify terrorists posing as regular citizens. While technology is undeniably useful, it is not fool proof. The chapter uses facial recognition software to illustrate issues with technology. This type of software often comes up with false positives and biases against minority groups. The chapter also raises issues of privacy and civil liberties while referencing the Pegasus spyware scandal as an example.