Margarita Lipatova

Margarita LipatovaNetwork Member

Margarita Lipatova is a PhD Candidate at the University of Halle and a research fellow at the MPI for Social Anthropology in Halle. She studied Medical Anthropology and South Asian Studies at the University of Heidelberg. Her thesis, entitled, “Mindfulness facted out: epistemic violence in creating and measuring scales”, looked at the mechanisms of scientific appropriation that enabled the originally Buddhist notion of sati (“mindfulness”) to be translated into a psychotherapeutic buzzword. In 2014, she joined a research project in Bangladesh that examined access to healthcare as well as understandings of health among the employees of several garment factories in Dhaka. Currently she is working on her doctoral project, examining how technologies of mobility control in Europe’s border regime are enacted, responded to, and contested.

Current position
PhD Researcher
University affiliation
University of Halle


Bordering Europe: Resistance and governance in Greek refugee camps

This research project concerns the (re-)production of the European border regime. It examines the complex forms of mobility control exercised on the external borders of the European Union, specifically, at Greece’s borders. Discourses of security and order, human trafficking, and terrorism, as well notions of crisis are appealed to in order to justify increasing securitization and militarization in the region. This involves, among other measures, increased surveillance, the recruitment of warships and helicopters, the construction of detention centers, and the multiplication of technologies of digital registration and biometric data collection.

This project has two main aims. First, I intend to examine how the practice of border management, with its technologies of security and biopolitics, manifests itself in the space of refugee camps. What actors are involved at these sites, and what politics are at play in shaping the dynamics within them? How is the governance of the camp population organized and represented? Second, I will investigate the lived reality of camp life and analyse experiences of encountering the border among those crossing it. In particular, I will explore how people on the move, while entering this regime of emergency governance, humanitarian initiatives, labelling, and categorizing, respond to and negotiate the disciplining and objectifying logic of the border regime. By describing the multiple practices, relationships and situations originating in camp settings, and by placing the focus on how the camp spaces are acted upon and enacted as sites of engagement, resistance, and performance, I aim to analyze the processual and turbulent character of the border, and examine the constitutive power of migration.