European Civilisation, National Power, and the Detention of Immigrants

  • Kostas Maronitis


The chapter examines the political and cultural meanings of detention for undocumented migrants in Greece. Central to this examination are the theoretical elaborations of Carl Schmitt and Wendy Brown on territorial division, the state of exception and waning sovereignty in conjunction with reports from the Human Rights Watch and the Greek Council for Refugees.


Detention centres Governmentality State of exception Sovereignty European civilisation 


  1. Agamben, Giorgio. 2000. Means Without End: Notes on Politics. Translated from the Italian by Vincenzo Binetti and Cesare Casarino. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.Google Scholar
  2. Agamben, Giorgio. 2005. The State of Exception. Translated from the Italian by Kevin Attell. Chicago: University of Chicago Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Alexander, Jeffrey, C. 2003. The Meanings of Social Life: A Cultural Sociology. Oxford: Oxford University Press.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Arendt, Hannah. 1976. The Origins of Totalitarianism. Cleveland and New York: Meridian.Google Scholar
  5. Brown, Wendy. 2012. Walled States, Waning Sovereignty. Brooklyn, NY: Zone Books.Google Scholar
  6. Butler, Judith. 2004. Precarious Life: The Powers of Mourning and Violence. London and New York: Verso.Google Scholar
  7. Castells, Manuel. 2010. The Rise of the Network Society. 2nd edition. Oxford and Malden MA: Wiley-Blackwell.Google Scholar
  8. Cheliotis, Leonidas, K. 2013. Immigrant Detention and State Denial in Greece. Open Democracy, 29 August. Accessed 27 March 2015.
  9. Douzinas, Costas. 2011. The Hunger Strikers are the Martyrs of Greece” The Guardian, 28 February. Accessed 26 August 2015.
  10. Foucault, Michel. 2008. The Birth of Biopolitics: Lectures at the Collége de France, 1978–1979. Translated from the French by Graham Burchell. Basingstoke: Palgrave McMillan.Google Scholar
  11. Giddens, Anthony. 2007. Europe in the Global Age. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  12. Herzfeld, Michael. 1992. The Social Production of Indifference: Exploring the Symbolic Roots of Western Bureaucracy. Chicago: Chicago University Press.Google Scholar
  13. Human Rights Watch. 2011. The EU’s Dirty Hands: Frontex Involvement in Ill Treatment of Migrant Detainees in Greece. New York: Human Rights Watch.Google Scholar
  14. Law No. 3386/2005. Codification of Legislation on the Entry, Residence and Social Integration of Third-Country Nationals on Greek Territory. Greece: Official Gazette of the Hellenic Republic.Google Scholar
  15. Papadopoulos, Dimitris, Niamh Stephenson, and Vasilis Tsianos. 2008. Escape Routes: Control and Subversion in the Twenty-first Century. London: Pluto.Google Scholar
  16. Presidential Decree 114/2010, for the Establishment of a Unified Procedure for the Recognition of the Status of Refugee to Foreigners. Ministry of Public Order and Citizen Protection. 2012.Google Scholar
  17. Rumford, Chris. 2006. Theorizing Borders. European Journal of Social Theory 9(2): 155–169.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Sassen, Saskia. 2006. Territory, Authority, Rights: From Medieval to Global Assemblages. Princeton and Oxford: Princeton University Press.Google Scholar
  19. Schmitt, Carl. 2003. The Nomos of the Earth in the International Law of Jus Publicum Euroaeum. Translated from the German by G.L. Ulmen. New York: Telos Press.Google Scholar
  20. Shamir, Ronen. 2005. Without Borders? Notes on Globalization as a Mobility Regime. Sociological Theory 23(2): 197–217.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Smith, Helena. 2014. Migrants Face “Living Hell” in Greek Detention. The Guardian, 1 April. Accessed 27 March 2011.
  22. Stevis, Matina, and Manuela Mesco. 2015. How Money, Race and Religion Determine the Fate of Europe-Bound Migrants. The Wall Street Journal, 16 August. Accessed 3 September 2015.
  23. To Vima. 2013. 400 Immigrants Go on Hunger Strike in Orestiada. To Vima, 28 August 2013. Accessed 27 March 2015.
  24. Turner, Brian, S. 2007a. The Enclave Society. Towards a Sociology of Immobility. European Journal of Social Theory 10(2): 287–304.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. Urry, John. 2005. Global Complexities. Cambridge: Polity.Google Scholar
  26. Wintour, Patrick. 2015. “Theresa May announces review of the immigration detainees’ welfare”. The Guardian [online] 8 February.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kostas Maronitis
    • 1
  1. 1.Leeds Trinity UniversityLeedsUnited Kingdom

Personalised recommendations