This article merges border and animal studies through a comparative study of Suad Amiry’s memoir Sharon and My Mother-in-Law: Ramallah Diaries (2005, Palestine) and Marios Piperides’s film Smuggling Hendrix (2018, Cyprus). Engaging with the concepts of border aesthetics, border logic, and border law, the article draws attention to the function of animal characters (dogs) and illustrates their becoming platforms of anti-border politics. Both narratives explore the difference between human and animal experiences of borders and border-crossing, and through the fictionalized adventures of Nura and Jimi render borders simultaneously penetrable and comical. Their ability to legally or illegally cross the same borders their human owners are confronted with equips authors with ample opportunity for sharp political critique, largely invested in exposing the absurdity borders generate. Assigning these dogs with different legal statuses (Nura has a passport and crosses the border legally while Jimi crosses underground), Amiry and Piperides scrutinize the association between illegal border-crossing and resistance, demonstrating how it is only the contestation of border law which alone undermines border logic. The article thus exposes the complex tension between the political gain produced by the politicization of these animals vis-à-vis their becoming border-crossers, and the implications of this gesture for animals.

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