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Reading: Bordering Processes: The Evolution of Social Borders at the Time of the Covid-19 Pandemic

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Bordering Processes: The Evolution of Social Borders at the Time of the Covid-19 Pandemic

Authors:

Reem Sultan ,

University of Bahrain, BH
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Lakshmi Srinivasan

Srishti Manipal Institute of Art, Design & Technology, IN
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Abstract

The global pandemic outbreak, due to its nature of being transmitted through physical proximity, has created an immediate need for physical distancing and reinforcement of private and personal spaces of individuals. This need has caused a gigantic ‘kinopolitical’ event that has resulted in a drastic change in social, spatial and virtual borders. However, due to the sudden nature of this rebordering of space, there has been a movement to virtual spaces to meet the social, emotional, cognitive and economic needs that were left unfulfilled. This has forced a greater permeability to virtual spaces of interaction - a kind of de-bordering of virtual spaces.

In this paper, we examine the emerging consequences of changing social order in India and Bahrain from the lens of the border theory. In the contexts of both countries, border theory has been used to offer insights into the following questions:

- How can we use border theory to analyse and evaluate pandemic response strategies employed so far?
- Who are the re-bordering and de-bordering processes serving and who are they excluding?
- What needs to change with individual strategies that can make pandemic planning more inclusive?
A qualitative approach has been used to analyse the newspaper coverage and the official announcements during the ongoing pandemic in India and Bahrain dating from March 2020 to September 2020. Through the examples of insights derived from the analysis of 3 case studies or instances, we conclude with a discussion on the different kinds of insights that analysis of pandemic response strategies through the lens of border theory can generate in order to facilitate restructuring pandemic response strategies to be more inclusive and holistic in both their planning & execution.

How to Cite: Sultan, R. and Srinivasan, L., 2021. Bordering Processes: The Evolution of Social Borders at the Time of the Covid-19 Pandemic. Cities People Places : An International Journal on Urban Environments, 5(2), pp.9–31. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/cpp.v5i2.61
Published on 15 Dec 2021.
Peer Reviewed

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