Why Sociology Is Silent Concerning Borders
Authors: S.E. Nikolov
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Border in sociological sense means a barrier that separates social groups, strata, their values, and the difference between ways of life between particular social groups. Such groups may be separated by many dividing lines, or borders: social/living conditions, opportunities/prospects, legal rights/customs, viewpoints, and so on. Sometimes mobility does not permit other than individual, or small-group, crossing of these borders. It seems really strange why border topic is almost completely absent from the sociology. It is so pertinent to the fate and shaping of various social groups, depending from the location of the border. We think of a boundary whenever we think of an entity demarcated from its surroundings. Events, too, have boundaries – temporal ones: their beginning, climax, final. All our lives are bounded in the continuum between our births and our deaths. A philosopher would imply also that even imaginary, abstract entities, such as concepts or layouts, have boundaries of their own. One may say that condition for all this boundary/border talk is coherent, and whether it reproduces the world around us’ structure, or the organizing activity of our intellect, are matters of deep philosophical controversy. Borders are difficult to disappear totally even within the European Union, providing some obstacles to the freedom of movement to those left still outside the Schengen agreement.