Permanent link to Research Commons versionhttps://hdl.handle.net/10289/15768
In Aotearoa / NewZealand, the relative safety offered by border regime closures during Covid-19 promised to ease uncertainty surrounding perilous futures, yet it did so by extending nation building into more intimate areas of life, exacerbating existing lines of discrimination. While justified in terms of crisis management, state expressions of citizen care during the pandemic were largely modelled in terms of a particular conflation of nature, society and economy peculiar to settler colonialism. Using bordering practices during the pandemic as a point of departure, this essay draws on scholarship on borders to interrogate settler colonialism in Aotearoa. This allows for four innovations: First, it situates Covid-19 as structure rather than event, one which accentuated historical patterns of nation-making. Second, it underscores continuities in Indigenous relations of ownership, belonging, social reproduction, kinship ethics and environmental engagements. Third, it suggests alliances between migrants, non-white and colonized peoples; those for whom borders do not remain at the periphery, but rather penetrate deep into the informal spaces of the everyday. And fourth, it recalibrates resistances as expressions of sociality aimed at reclassifying nature, economy and society.
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