What is “Europe”? Who is a “European”? At the beginning of the twenty-first century the European Question has become a problem of a new significance and magnitude — above all in Europe itself, but also in its increasingly amorphous externalized border zones and beyond. To ask the European Question is to identify a problem that is simultaneously epistemic (geographic, historiographical, ethnographic) and political. Today, in the extended aftermaths of orientalism, transatlantic slavery, colonialism, the Cold War, and European integration and amid the shocks of the global crisis of capitalism, the postcolonial politics of migration and race problematize and elucidate some of the most urgent and dire perplexities of the contemporary European scene from the critical standpoint of transnational, intercontinental, cross-border migration. This essay proposes the urgent necessity to critically formulate the European Question, as a problem of postcolonial whiteness, from the vantage point of the racialized conditions of the migrants who are literally making Europe anew.
Research Article|September 01 2016
The European Question: Migration, Race, and Postcoloniality in Europe
Nicholas De Genova
Social Text (2016) 34 (3 (128)): 75-102.