The Making and Unmaking of Boundaries
This chapter returns to the theoretical contributions of the book. It argues that despite perpetrators' best efforts, violent projects — including violent displays — failed to harden or shore up group boundaries, even when terror tactics diminished people's room for maneuver. Even under the most threatening circumstances, people in each locale continued to violate the precepts of the nationalist, ethnic, or color line, laying bare the fragility of race- or ethnicity-based claims and racial and ethnic categories to order and direct people to act in specific ways. The dividing line (whether it be race or ethnicity), in a word, resists attempts at fixing its content and meaning, including violence put on display. Despite the best efforts of extremists, nationalists, and supremacists, some people will not go along with the categorization of bodies established by and through violent displays.
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