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In the mirror: The legitimation work of globalization


This essay examines the legitimation work of globalization by bringing into dialogue the authors' research on immigration, finance, and intercountryadoption. It is concerned with the practices that produce, define, and preclude both movement and connection, such as "naturalizing" some border crossings while criminalizing others; denying the histories and policies that allow some parents to "choose" babies while others must abandon them; and challenging the practices through which small states tweak transnational financial systems while allowing multinational corporations privileges denied small states. Legitimation work (re)configures jurisdictionality, transparency, and sovereignty - the constructs on which debates over globalization's consequences hinge. Examining how these constructs order, include, and exclude persons, goods, and practices sheds light on the boundaries, slippages, and connections between the legitimate and the illegitimate within global processes.

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