Movement and the Ordering of Freedom: On Liberal Governances of Mobility
The Fence That “Ill Deserves the Name of Confinement”: Locomotion and the Liberal Body
This chapter analyzes the role of free movement in early liberal thought. Focusing on the work of Hobbes, Lock, Blackstone and Stanton, it argues that motion was a central element in the conceptualization of the liberal idea of freedom. Second, it shows movement was the privileged mode by which the liberal subject was embodied. Moreover, movement was the corporeal condition for rationality. This centrality of movement shows that the figure of the abstract, universal subject is a later incarnation of liberal subjectivity and is not integral to liberalism as such. It also explains why some groups of people, whose movement did not conform with a particular norm (physically disabled or presumably nomads) were excluded from the scope of liberal principles of freedom and rationality.