From securitisation to martialisation: logistics of humanitarian protection in Brazil’s Amazon

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The association between logistics and militarised humanitarianism is expanding as a strategy for managing migrants' productive and reproductive lives. In Brazil, despite a progressive humanitarian visa policy, the national army remains responsible for the logistics of a severely underfunded humanitarian operation in Brazil’s Amazon. This study, based on participatory action research with 300 migrants, introduces the notion of martialisation to show political and socioeconomic dimensions that are juxtaposed in the military logistics of humanitarian zones and subsequently experienced as a dominant structuring process of exploitation. These are securitization of migration linked to at once the deepening of market liberalism and the normalisation of military intervention within productive and reproductive processes. Findings show that the military leadership in Brazil’s humanitarian response reveals a multi-scalar phenomenon of military rule that contributes to sustaining the repressive labour regime in Brazil’s Amazon. It articulates the structures of labour subordination with the micromanagement of reproductive measures by which migrants are controlled, exploited, and dispossessed of their rights. The conclusion makes the case for the collective organization of migrants in pursuit of transformative action.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages23
JournalEnvironment and Planning D: Society and Space
Early online date24 May 2024
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 May 2024


  • militarised humanitarism
  • migration logistics
  • martialisation of migration
  • labour regime
  • migrant labour


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