DOI: 10.1111/anti.13019 ISSN: 0066-4812

Insidious Harassment: Criminalisation, Solidarity, and Migration in France and Morocco

Maria Hagan, Sébastien Bachelet
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Geography, Planning and Development


Amidst well‐documented hostile migration policies, this article explores how logics of criminalisation seep into the lives of activists and citizens, providing assistance, relief, advocacy, and other forms of support to migrant people. As presences considered legal and legitimate, solidarity actors inhabit distinct subjectivities from those of people migrating informally, yet state authorities interpret their acts as problematic and subject them to intrusive modes of policing. Drawing on critical border studies and feminist geography, this article homes in on less spectacular modes of criminalisation that target them in the intimacy of their everyday lives, threatening their sense of security through opaque surveillance, attacks on their emotions, employment prospects and family life. Drawing on ethnographic research carried out among these groups in Morocco and northern France, we conceptualise this mode of criminalisation as insidious harassment, examining the entanglement of geopolitics, emotions, and the intimate at these migration pressure points. Without decentring migrants as the primary targets of violent bordering, it broadens our understanding of these regimes by drawing attention to the ways in which they viscerally target those who work to protect the rights of migrant people.

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