Despite a long-standing recognition of the importance of time for structuring social experience, and of the considerable variation of perceptions of time between people and across social contexts, migration scholars have long neglected the temporal dimension. This chapter addresses the neglect by examining changing temporal conditions, restrictions and opportunities embedded in British immigration regulations affecting ‘deportable’ migrants. It will argue that the immigration legislation and Ministers draw on multiple senses of time: from bureaucratic, measurable time to a phenomenological sense of lived time; a linear progressive time; monstrously circular time; and as a commodity that can be accumulated, lost and stolen. The chapter will argue that the immigration rules operate through ‘temporal governance’ evident, for example, in the numerous and complicated temporal hurdles that serve to make possible, or instantly nullify, immigration applications. It will also suggest that the importance of lived time, acknowledged through the rights to respect of one’s private and family life, is increasingly devalued and delegitimised in favour of less ‘democratically’ available considerations. Keywords: immigration regulations, deportation, bureaucratic time, lived time, temporal governance, UK
Nick Gill, Jennifer Allsopp, Andrew Burridge, Melanie Griffiths, Natalia Paszkiewicz and Rebecca Rotter
The chapter sets out a set of conceptual resources with which to renew attention to the issues of ‘access to’ and ‘exclusion from’ legal justice, with particular attention to legal justice in the context of refugee claims. Drawing on scholarship that resists the opposition of absence and presence and distinguishes various different types of presence, as well as extensive empirical work with asylum seekers claiming refugee status, the chapter shows that they are frequently both present and absent during important parts of the proceedings. The law’s over-emphasis on bodily presence, however, often conceals these complexities. By highlighting this effect, the authors demonstrate that thinking about the relationship between law, space and refugee migration in terms of multiple forms of absence and presence is an important way to reveal how exclusions from legal justice arise.