Open Borders, Global Citizenship, and the Working Class

ZERO ANTHROPOLOGY

In this and the next article I will discuss some of the politically contentious issues surrounding what some of us call “illegal immigration,” with reference to the works of three anthropologists—Andrew Kipnis, Nicholas De Genova, and Luis F.B. Plascencia—and the commentaries they sometimes make of each other’s arguments. This is a promised continuation from two earlier articles dealing with immigration and capital, and citizenship (in the context of resource nationalism), where I mentioned in the latter piece that Andrew Kipnis, an Australian anthropologist, had advanced an argument for what might be called global or open citizenship. That is the focus of this article; the next one focuses on the debate among US anthropologists about classifying people as either “illegal immigrants” versus “undocumented migrants”.

The Argument for First World Open Citizenship

Kipnis (2004) makes an argument for removing barriers to immigration, writing in the Australian context where successive governments…

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