This paper argues that one useful way to think about the relationship between racism and borders is to say that racism produces hierarchies of (non)citizenship. In the first section, I work these arguments through in relation to my research with the friends of family of deported migrants, examining how witnessing deportation both reaffirms and produces hierarchies of (non)citizenship. These examples offer an invitation to trace and theorise the dynamic relationship between bordering and race-making. I then go on to examine how citizenship is centrally imbricated in race-making at the global scale. There, I historicise citizenship as a global regime for the international management of populations, suggesting that citizenship does similar kinds of work to race under empire. Taken together, these two points raise questions about whether we can and should imbue citizenship with radical and emancipatory potential. Is the articulation and celebration of non-national citizenships a useful framing? I remain cautious, and this paper is intended to underline that caution by approaching the question from one particular vantage point – one in which the theorisation of and struggle against racism is made central.
Luke de Noronha, Hierarchies of membership and the management of global population: reflections on citizenship and racial ordering, Citizenship Studies, 2022.