“Cause I’m a gypsy, are you coming with me? I might steal your clothes and wear them if they fit me” Shakira.
Karim H. Karim highlights important concepts regarding the nation-state and diasporas. Namely, that borders are generally fictitious, drawn around groups of people, rather than separated by physically landscapes. Containing people within these lines--or outside of them--has caused quite a commotion in recent decades: just ask someone who knows a thing or two about America’s budget deficit in regards to immigration.
However, my next example does not have to do with America, but another Western Power: France. Evidently the French, or at least Sarkozy and friends, are not big fans of the gypsies. Interesting enough, the group of Roma that were just expelled from the land of Champagne and chapeaus, are Romanian. I say interestingly enough, because the word Roma has nothing to do with being Romanian. Rather the Roma’s ancestors are from Southeast Asia, mainly India.
Circling back before I get too far off topic--expelling Roma from France is exactly what Karim indicates the Westphalian era has taught us: nation-states believe (and wield a great amount of support) that they have the rights to the land allocated to them so long as there is enough support from other nation-states. Yet, one of the agreements of many of today’s supranational organizations, take the EU for example, are border-less work permits. EU citizens can travel within the EU for, and to, work. The EU is reverting to the traditional means of travel, transportation, and survival by allowing this. And good for them.
Now, I am not taking a stance on the Roma issue (a bit tacky I know) but this post is designed to instigate a debate on whether or not our world is heading back to a border-less system, or whether more of the Roma of the world will be confined to a permanent location.