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Robyn Sampson

While immigration detention has attracted a growing amount of critical attention, alternatives to immigration detention have largely gone unnoticed. This chapter starts to fill this gap by analysing a particular type of alternative to detention known as ‘community detention’. Building on debates about the uses and limitations of biopolitical theory in border studies, the author critically analyses the phenomenon of community detention to explore the nature of the exception in the governance of borders. The phrase embodied borders is used to account for the location and negotiation of state borders at the site of the migrant body. This raises significant conceptual challenges for the traditional definition of the state as a political authority bound by territory. In the chapter the author confirms yet renegotiates the nature of the exception in contemporary border policies.