Mapping Shadows. Bodies, Exile and Resistance

By Eugénia Vilela

In a political scenography of standardisation of extreme violence, which is feature of the contemporary world, European nation-states propose migration policies elaborated within the framework of a regime of sovereignty that has the power to expose people in exile to death. Caught in a logic of cruelty, the foreigner is stopped in spaces where the spectral presence of death composes a form of violence that seeps into words and gestures. These spaces of uprootedness – these grey areas – open a wound in the body of the world. From the words of Ammar, a Syrian refugee who has crossed one of the grey areas of European migration policies – the border zone between Belarus and Poland – we will wonder about the cartographies of the shadow in which bodies in exile become battlefields. Between the mortifying assignment of a body to a space of confinement and the force unleashed by a body that resists, movements take place that produce unexpected realities. These movements - which testify about different ways of confronting the world – can compose political actions created by the bodies and gestures of people in exile. It is a question of finding the blind spot of power through the movement of the body, through the gestures that redraw time. In the diagonal between the past and the future, bodies integrate and displace representations. Through their gestures, they open up a space-time of resistance.

  • bodies
  • gesture
  • exile
  • grey areas
  • resistance
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