ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Immigration and State Power

Globalisation implies the increasing mobility of capital, goods and labour across political boundaries, just as the earlier creation of national economies required the increasing mobility of the factors of production within national borders. Such an economic order supersedes the old world of separate and politically defined national economies. Yet, the economic question of facilitating mobility is subordinated by nation states to the political issue of migrants as new citizens or as invaders. The economics of the new system, thus, collide directly with the politics of the old.

COMMENTARY
Immigration and State Power Nigel Harris control of the country’s population. One component of this, historically, has entailed attempts to regulate or prevent movement, and at the extreme, to enforce a measure of immobility on the inhabit-

Globalisation implies the increasing mobility of capital, goods and labour across political boundaries, just as the earlier creation of national economies required the increasing mobility of the factors of production within national borders. Such an economic order supersedes the old world of separate and politically defined national economies. Yet, the economic question of facilitating mobility is subordinated by nation states to the political issue of migrants as new citizens or as invaders. The economics of the new system, thus, collide directly with the politics of the old.

This essay is based on a lecture delivered at the Society for International Development at the Institute of Social Studies at the Hague in May 2009. A version also appears at http://www. iss.nl/DevISSues/Articles/Immigration-and-State-Power.

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