My work discusses the two notions of border and holes exploiting them to explore the porosity of spaces as a shared - and essential - feature, constructing the narrative in Nora K. Jemisin’s The Fifth Season (2015) and China Miéville’s This Census-Taker (2016). Focusing on the Fantastic of Space as defined by Garcia in her Space and the Postmodern Fantastic in Contemporary Literature (2015, 9), I approach the way in which these two texts develop an entirely new vision and interpretation of some traditional formulae of the fantastic fiction, keeping within the borders of identifiable narrative genres (fantasy, science fiction, weird fiction, New Weird), but also exploding their strictures and producing highly disquieting stories and landscapes.

Reflecting on the epistemological devices at play in The Fifth Season and This Census-Taker, I am arguing that the two selected novels define borders as simultaneously performing, as Etienne Balibar often states, the specific function of defnining a territory and they exemplify the way in which a border is at the same time a form of protection and a device for exclusion.

In this respect, the analysis of the fantastic of space in these two narratives may help us to investigate some of the ways in which the notions of border, borderland, boundary and limen define new subjectivities interlacing the tension towards belonging and the oppression of closure.