The Immigration Article of the Day is US Asylum Lawyering and Temporal Violence by Catherine L. Crooke, just published in Law & Social Inquiry.
The full article is available here.
Here is the abstract:
Research on the temporal dimensions of international migration focuses on how migrants experience time. This study instead turns attention to public interest lawyers, whose work plays a crucial role in ensuring favorable legal outcomes for immigrants, in order to consider time’s salience within the US asylum context. Based on twelve months of ethnographic fieldwork with Los Angeles-based public interest asylum attorneys, this article argues that lawyers confront both weaponized efficiency and weaponized inefficiency in the course of representing asylum seekers. Advocates must rush to keep pace, on the one hand, as various state actors accelerate asylum processes and, on the other, find ways to advance clients’ interests even as state agencies selectively slow procedures to a standstill. These findings affirm that temporal contradictions define the US asylum system. Further, they demonstrate that lawyers experience these contradictions not as natural phenomena but, rather, as temporal violence: in a range of contexts, government action mobilizes time—whether actively or passively—in the service of migration control.