By Miriam I. Ticktin

This booklet explores the accidental outcomes of compassion on this planet of immigration politics. Miriam Ticktin specializes in France and its humanitarian immigration practices to argue politics in response to care and defense can lead the country to view problems with immigration and asylum via a clinical lens. studying “regimes of care”—humanitarianism and the move to forestall violence opposed to women—Ticktin asks what it potential to allow the in poor health and sexually violated to move borders whereas the impoverished can't? She demonstrates how in an inhospitable immigration weather, strange pathologies can turn into the ability to residency papers, making stipulations like HIV, melanoma, and choose studies of sexual violence into certain benefits for would-be migrants. Ticktin’s research additionally indicts the inequalities cast via worldwide capitalism that force humans emigrate, and the kingdom practices that criminalize the vast majority of undocumented migrants on the rate of deal with the outstanding few.

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Extra info for Casualties of Care: Immigration and the Politics of Humanitarianism in France

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1997; Das et al. 1997; Das et al. 2001; Bourdieu 1999; Bourgois 2009). However, I want to suggest that there is a fine line between recognizing suffering and fetishizing it as the fundamental and only basis of a common humanity. While this book argues that an understanding of suffering as the basis of a universal humanity can result in the obligation to use suffering to barter for membership in the category humanity, we still need a language that can express the experience of pain in all its forms.

While neither these centers nor these practices can be called “new,” my point is that they must be located in a political environment where policing is ever more apparent and applauded. Already, in his first round as interior minister, Sarkozy was proudly dubbed the “top cop,” and President Chirac garnered a similar title, “first cop of France,” after he named himself head of the already extant Council of Domestic Security. 21 For instance, the 2003 loi Sarkozy promised to double the number of places in the centres de rétention over the subsequent five years, and the time of detention was increased to thirty-two days from the maximum twelve that previously existed (Tabet 2003).

In this “new humanity,” then, sentiment must be smuggled into biological measurements; one’s suffering must be configured as a particular biological form with affective resonance—enough to compel moral action. This can have serious consequences, as we will see; these range from bartering for membership with one’s life and one’s body, to situations where biological and political claims recombine in new ways, producing and protecting a very particular humanity.  Amara, who worked at the medical clinic for undocumented immigrants that I had been observing, suggested to me that I might be interested in a paradox he had witnessed.

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