Michael J. Shapiro
In order to determine whether an individual or a specific identity-bearing group has potential for terrorism, the state engages in a systematic practice of constructing biographies, which could warrant its use of lethal power. This practice privileges a security consciousness while discounting the vagaries of everyday life contingency, which plays a crucial role in creating who we are and what we do. The element of contingency becomes more visible when we focus on the lives of migrants and their movements. The State’s excessive concern with security inhibits the opportunity spaces for role exits from the indemnity economies it invents. In this brief response to such actions of the state, I take an ethical stance that affords victims the right to refute their constructed identities and to presenting counterbiographies.