Tuesday, 22 May 2018

Andreas Folkers gives a working paper on 'Logistical resistance: Operations of capital, corporate security and protest in supply chains and finance'

This paper investigates the conflictual constellation between protest movements and corporate security initiatives, in order to deepen the understanding of the political stakes of attempts to secure circulation. In recent years protest movements around the world have engaged in acts of logistical resistance in attempts to disrupt economic circulation. Corporate actors increasingly regard these movements as severe threats to their operations. Our paper will focus on the relationship between ‘logistical resistance’ and corporate security strategies, as a way of illuminating the hidden work of Business Continuity Management in finance and Supply Chain Security in logistics. In their own ways both security apparatuses are vital for contemporary capitalism by helping to safeguard, establish and maintain the connectivity between heterogeneous operations of capital. Logistical resistance targets this connectivity and thus becomes a risk for endeavours to secure circulation. We argue that the study of logistical resistance both makes visible the political stakes of security as a threat to democratic politics and shows the vulnerability and contingency of contemporary operations of capital. The paper provides a conceptual contribution to debates on the operations of capital, on corporate security and on logistical resistance as well as an analysis of particular cases: public protests in Frankfurt’s financial district that attempted to interrupt the banking business, attempts to block seaports in the context of Occupy Oakland, and demonstrations against the recent G20 summit in Hamburg.

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