The intimate borders of epidemiological nationalism

Bryonny Goodwin-Hawkins

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Amidst the COVID-19 crisis, nation-states closed borders. Borders divide – and intimate difference. In this article, I trace an emergent epidemiological nationalism which intimates a contagious other, taking ‘the’ border as my (unstable) object. While post-war and post-wall European projects celebrate dismantling borders, bordering continually becomes by saturating space with territoriality. Illustrating epidemiological nationalism's intimately located here and there, I turn an ethnographic gaze to Wales: a nation yet not a state, with a border that cannot be closed. Through the socio-spatial saturate of the Welsh border's enduring (non)existence run frictive, entangled intimacies. Meshing border studies with Lauren Berlant's theorisation of intimacies, I show epidemiology's conscription in imaginatively inscribing a safely state-like Welsh nation.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)67-70
Number of pages4
JournalAnthropology in Action
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 01 Dec 2020


  • Borders
  • Britain
  • COVID-19
  • Identity
  • Nationalism
  • Wales


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