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Border Theatre: On the arts of security and resistance

Amoore, L.; Hall, A.


A. Hall


This essay addresses the conditions and limits of artistic interventions in the contemporary landscape of border security. It argues that the theatrical rituals of border security — scanning, screening, verifying identity — have become domesticated and all-but-invisible in our daily scopic regimes. At the same time, the essay suggests that surprising, enchanting encounters with the techniques and technologies of security can interrupt border sequences and create invigorated possibilities for public engagement. An ethics of unanticipated worlds is proposed as an alternative to political action as always proximate to observable and visible violence. In a world where rituals of border security increasingly operate precisely by pre-deciding and pre-empting in advance, art that works in the absence of certainty and decidability offers a crucial window through which to evaluate and respond.


Amoore, L., & Hall, A. (2010). Border Theatre: On the arts of security and resistance. cultural geographies, 17(3), 299-319.

Journal Article Type Article
Publication Date Jul 1, 2010
Deposit Date Nov 22, 2010
Journal Cultural Geographies
Print ISSN 1474-4740
Electronic ISSN 1477-0881
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 17
Issue 3
Pages 299-319
Keywords Risk, Security, Borders, Art, US-Mexico.