Cecilie Baann

My project is located in northern Cameroon and the Lake Chad region, and takes what has become known as the security-development nexus as its starting point. I will investigate what the dominant narratives about the 'security' and 'developmental' problems in the region are, and explore the specific entanglement of security and development through the historical power relations, changing social practices, historical memories, and spatial movements and imaginations. Currently, there are millions of people in dire need of assistance around Lake Chad, and the international humanitarian and development community, as well as the Cameroonian government, has responded in a variety of ways. During my fieldwork in neighbouring Nigeria, I often met officials lamenting that the region's problems came from people not being "security conscious". In this project I seek to explore discursive statements in their historical and socio-political context, focusing on the grounded knowledges, perceptions and images of the relations between security and development, and the kind of 'global' discourses they are shaped by. Beyond discourse and structural violence, I will focus on how those deemed marginal or recipients themselves appropriate language and practices for their own use and to contest the dominant power. This entails an exploration of how people, through bodily movement and sensations, be it into refugee camps, air-conditioned offices, or food donation lines, shape new experiences and knowledges, and use these to transgress the frames of explanation provided by the dominant.