Channel Crossings: Offshoring Asylum and the Afterlife of Empire in the Dover Strait


A guest lecture by Professor Lucy Mayblin of the University of Sheffield. 

Abstract:  In 2020, over 8400 people made their way from France to the UK coast using small vessels. They did so principally in order to claim asylum in the United Kingdom (UK). Much like in other border-zones, the UK state has portrayed irregular Channel crossings as an invading threat and has deployed a militarised response. This talk situates contemporary British responses to irregular Channel crossers within the context of colonial histories and maritime legacies. It focuses particularly on the enduring appeal of ‘the offshore’ as a place where undesirable racialized populations can be placed. The aim is to offer a historicised perspective on this phenomenon which seeks to respond to calls to embed colonial histories in analyses of migration governance in the present.

Co-sponsored by the Refugee Research Group.

Live on Zoom:

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