Carceral Geographies, Police Geographies, and the Networked Continuum of State-Sanctioned Coercion and Control
Keywords:Carceral geographies, policing, state violence, racial capitalism, scholar-activism, abolition
This essay introduces a special issue of ACME focused on the “carceral-police continuum.” We use this phrase to highlight three important concepts in policing and carceral geographies scholarship. The first is the imminence of coercive state power, and its uneven distribution. The second is the tangled and expansive web of relationships through which carceral logics and practices operate. The third are the ways attention to these conditions can contribute a conceptual framework to abolitionist praxis. After first offering some additional commentary on each of the problem areas identified above, we then describe how each of the papers collected here advances our understanding of these issues. We conclude by identifying several directions for continuing development, including a need for ongoing conceptual and methodological innovation that supports efforts toward collective forms of organizing, mitigation and redress directed at various forms of state violence, carceral power and their repercussions.
Akarsu, Hayal. 2020. “An Iron fist in a velvet glove: topologies of policing and the limits of exposé.” SocietyandSpace.org. October 1, https://www.societyandspace.org/articles/an-iron-fist-in-a-velvet-glove-topologies-of-policing-and-the-limits-of-expose.
Allspach, Anke. 2010. “Landscapes of (neo-) liberal control: The transcarceral spaces of federally sentenced women in Canada.” Gender, Place and Culture 17, no. 6: 705-723.
Belcher, Oliver and Lauren Martin. 2019. "The problem of access: Site visits, selective disclosure, and freedom of information in qualitative security research." In Secrecy and Methods in Security Research, edited by Marieke de Goede, Esmé Bosma & Polly Pallister-Wilkins 33-47. New York: Routledge.
Benjamin, Walter. 1978. “Critique of violence” in Reflections: Essays, Aphorisms, Autobiographical Writings. New York: Schocken Books
Bloch, Stefano. 2021. "Police and policing in geography: From methods, to theory, to praxis." Geography Compass 15, no. 3: e12555.
Bloch, Stefano, and Enrique Alan Olivares‐Pelayo. 2021. "Carceral geographies from inside prison gates: the micro‐politics of everyday racialisation." Antipode 53, n. 5: 1319-1338
Bloch, Stefano, and Dugan Meyer. 2019. "Implicit revanchism: Gang injunctions and the security politics of white liberalism." Environment and planning D: Society and space 37, no. 6: 1100-1118
Bonds, Anne. 2009. "Discipline and devolution: Constructions of poverty, race, and criminality in the politics of rural prison development." Antipode 41, no. 3: 416-438.
Boyce, Geoffrey A. 2020. "Immigration, policing, and the politics of time." Geography Compass 14, no. 8: e12496.
Boyce, Geoffrey A. 2018. "Appearing ‘out of place’: Automobility and the everyday policing of threat and suspicion on the US/Canada frontier." Political Geography 64: 1-12.
Boyce, Geoffrey A., Jeffrey M. Banister, and Jeremy Slack. 2015. “You and what army?: Violence, the state, and Mexico’s war on drugs” Territory, Politics, Governance 3, no. 4: 446-468.
Cahill, Caitlin, Brett G. Stoudt, María Elena Torre, X. Darian, Amanda Matles, Kimberly Belmonte, Selma Djokovic, Jose Lopez, and Adilka Pimentel. 2019. "’They were looking at us like we were bad people’: Growing up policed in the gentrifying, still disinvested city." ACME: An International Journal for Critical Geographies 18, no. 5: 1128-1149.
Camp, Jordan T., and Christina Heatherton. 2016. Editors, Policing the planet: Why the policing crisis led to Black Lives Matter. New York: Verso Books.
Cassidy, Kathryn, Paul Griffin and Felicity Wray. 2020. “Labour, carcerality and punishment: ‘less-than-human’ labour landscapes.” Progress in Human Geography 44, no. 6: 1081-1102.
Coddington, Kate, Deirdre Conlon and Lauren L. Martin. 2020. “Destitution economies: circuits of value in asylum, refugee, and migration control.” Annals of the American Association of Geographers 110, no. 5: 1425-1444.
Coleman, Mat. 2016. "State power in blue." Political geography 51: 76-86.
Coleman, Mat. 2012. "The ‘local’ migration state: The site‐specific devolution of immigration enforcement in the US South." Law & Policy 34, no. 2: 159-190.
Coleman, Mat, and Angela Stuesse. 2016. "The disappearing state and the quasi‐event of immigration control." Antipode 48, no. 3: 524-543.
Conlon, Deirdre, Nancy Hiemstra, and Alison Mountz. 2017. “Geographical perspectives on detention: spatial control and its contestation.” In Michael J. Flynn and Matthew B. Flynn (eds.), Challenging Immigration Detention. Northampton, MA: Edward Elgar Publishing.
Cuomo, Dana. 2013. "Security and fear: The geopolitics of intimate partner violence policing." Geopolitics 18, no. 4: 856-874.
Derickson, Kate Driscoll. 2017. "Urban geography II: Urban geography in the age of Ferguson." Progress in Human Geography 41, no. 2: 230-244.
Dowler, Loraine. 2012. “Gender, militarization and sovereignty.” Geography Compass 6, no. 8: 490-499.
Gill, Nick, Deirdre Conlon, Dominique Moran and Andrew Burridge. 2018. “Carceral circuitry: new directions in carceral geography.” Progress in Human Geography 42, no. 2: 183-204.
Gilmore, Ruth Wilson. 2017. “Abolition geography and the problem of innocence.” In Futures of Black Radicalism, edited by Gaye Theresa Johnson & Alex Lubin, 225-240. New York: Verso.
Gilmore, Ruth Wilson. 2015. “The worrying state of the anti-prison movement.” Social Justice. http://www.socialjusticejournal.org/the-worrying-state-of-the-anti-prison-movement/.
Gilmore, Ruth Wilson. 2007. Golden Gulag: Prisons, Surplus, Crisis, and Opposition in Globalizing California. Berkeley, CA: University of California Press.
Gilmore, Ruth Wilson. 2002. “Fatal couplings of power and difference: Notes on racism and geography.” The Professional Geographer, 54, no. 1: pp.15-24.
Herbert, Steve, and Elizabeth Brown. 2006. "Conceptions of space and crime in the punitive neoliberal city." Antipode 38, no. 4: 755-777.
Heynen, Nik and Megan Ybarra. 2021. “On abolition ecologies and making ‘freedom as a place’.” Antipode 53, no. 1: 21-35.
Hiemstra, Nancy, 2017. “Periscoping as a feminist methodological approach for researching the seemingly hidden.” The Professional Geographer 69, no. 2: 329-336.
Hiemstra, Nancy and Deirdre Conlon. 2017. “Beyond privatization: bureaucratization and the spatialities of immigration detention expansion.” Territory, Politics, Governance 5, no. 3: 252-268.
Hiemstra, Nancy and Deirdre Conlon (eds.). 2016. Intimate Economies of Immigration Detention: Critical Perspectives. New York: Routledge.
INCITE! Women of Color Against Violence. 2008. "Law Enforcement Violence Against Women of Color and Trans People of Color: A Critical Intersection of Gender Violence and State Violence.” https://incite-national.org/stop-law-enforcement-violence-toolkit/.
Jefferson, Brian J. 2020. Digitize and Punish: Racial Criminalization in the Digital Age. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Kaba, Mariame. 2021. We Do This 'Til We Free Us: Abolitionist Organizing and Transforming Justice. Chicago: Haymarket Books.
Kaufman, Emily. 2020. “Police Geographies.” SocietyandSpace.org. https://www.societyandspace.org/forums/police-geographies.
Kaufman, E., 2016. “Policing mobilities through bio-spatial profiling in New York City.” Political Geography 55: 72-81.
Loyd, Jenna M. 2020. “Boundaries of policing” SocietyandSpace.org. October 1. https://www.societyandspace.org/articles/boundaries-of-policing.
Loyd, Jenna M., and Anne Bonds. 2018. “Where do Black lives matter? Race, stigma, and place in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.” The Sociological Review 66, no. 4: 898-918.
Loyd, Jenna M. and Alison Mountz. 2018. Boats, Borders, and Bases. Berkeley: University of California Press.
Loyd, Jenna M., Matt Mitchelson, and Andrew Burridge (eds). 2012. Beyond Walls and Cages: Prisons, Borders, and Global Crisis. Athens: University of Georgia Press.
Martin, Lauren. 2020. “Carceral economies of migration control.” Progress in Human Geography 45, no. 4: 740-757.
Massaro, Vanessa A. 2020. “Relocating the ‘inmate’: Tracing the geographies of social reproduction in correctional supervision.” Environment and Planning C: Politics and Space 38, no. 7-8: 1216-1236.
Massaro, Vanessa A., and Jill Williams. 2013. “Feminist geopolitics.” Geography Compass 7, no. 8: 567-577.
MPD150. 2020. “Enough is enough: a 150 year performance review of the Minneapolis police department.” Summer 2020. https://www.mpd150.com/wp-content/uploads/reports/report_2_compressed.pdf.
Mitchell, Timothy. 1999. "Society, economy, and the state effect." In State/culture, pp. 76-97. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Press.
Moran, Dominique. 2016. Carceral Geography: Spaces and Practices Of Incarceration. Routledge.
Moran, Dominique, Nick Gill and Deirdre Conlon. 2013. Eds. Carceral Spaces: Mobility and Agency in Imprisonment and Migrant Detention New York: Routledge.
Moran, Dominique, Marie A. Hutton, Louise Dixon and Tom Disney. 2018. “‘Daddy is a difficult word for me to hear’: Carceral geographies of parenting and the prison visiting room as a contested space of situated fathering.” Children's geographies 15, no. 1: 107-121.
Mountz, Alison. 2012. "Mapping remote detention." In Beyond walls and cages: Prisons, borders, and global crisis, edited by Jenna M. Loyd, Matt Mitchelson & Andrew Burridge, 91-104. Athens, GA: University of Georgia Press.
Mountz, Alison, Kate Coddington, R. Tina Catania, and Jenna M. Loyd. 2013. "Conceptualizing detention: Mobility, containment, bordering, and exclusion." Progress in Human Geography 37, no. 4: 522-541.
Movement for Black Lives. 2016. “The Platform.” https://policy.m4bl.org/platform/
Neocleous, Mark. 2014. War Power, Police Power. Edinburgh: Edinburgh University Press.
Murakawa, N., 2014. The First Civil Right: How Liberals Built Prison America. Oxford University Press.
Nguyen, Nicole. 2019. Suspect Communities: Anti-Muslim Racism and the Domestic War on Terror. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Pain, Rachel. 2015. "Intimate war." Political Geography 44: 64-73.
Parekh, Trushna. 2015. “They want to live in the Tremé, but they want it for their ways of living”: gentrification and neighborhood practice in Tremé, New Orleans. Urban Geography 36, no. 2: 201-220.
Ramírez, Margo M., 2020. “City as borderland: gentrification and the policing of black and latinx geographies in Oakland.” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 38, no. 1: 147-166.
Ritchie, A.J., 2017. Invisible no more: Police violence against Black women and women of color. Boston: Beacon Press.
Roy, Ananya. 2019. “The City in the age of Trumpism: From sanctuary to abolition.” Environment and Planning D: Society and Space 37, no. 5: 761-778.
Seigel, Micol. 2018. Violence Work: State Power and the Limits of Police. Durham: Duke University Press.
Shabazz, Rashad. 2015. Spatializing Blackness: Architectures of Confinement and Black Masculinity in Chicago. Chicago: University of Illinois Press.
Story, Brett. 2019. Prison Land: Mapping Carceral Power across Neoliberal America. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
Smith, Neil. 2001. “Global social cleansing: Postliberal revanchism and the export of zero tolerance.” Social Justice, 28, no. 3 pp.68-74.
Stuesse, Angela and Mat Coleman. 2014. “Automobility, immobility, altermobility: Surviving and resisting the intensification of immigrant policing.” City & Society 26, no. 1: 51-72.
Taylor, Keeanga-Yamahtta, 2016. From #BlackLivesMatter to Black Liberation. Chicago: Haymarket Books.
Turner, Jennifer. 2016. The Prison Boundary: Between Society And Carceral Space. New York: Springer.
Wacquant, Loïc. 2001. "Deadly symbiosis: When ghetto and prison meet and mesh." Punishment & Society 3, no. 1: 95-133.
Wang, Jackie. 2018. Carceral Capitalism. Los Angeles: Semiotext(e).
Williams, Jill and Geoffrey A. Boyce. 2013. “Fear, loathing and the everyday geopolitics of encounter in the Arizona borderlands” Geopolitics 18, no. 4: 895-916.
Woods, Clyde. 2011. “Traps, skid row and Katrina” in Downtown Blues: A Skid Row Reader, edited by Christina Heatherton, 50-56. Los Angeles: LA CAN.
Woodward, Keith, and Mario Bruzzone. 2015. "Touching like a state." Antipode 47, no. 2: 539-556.
Ybarra, Megan. 2021. “Site fight! Toward the abolition of immigrant detention on tacoma’s tar pits (and everywhere else).” Antipode 53, no. 1: 36-55.
How to Cite
Authors agree to publish their articles in ACME under the Creative Commons "Attribution/Non-Commercial/No Derivative Works" Canada licence. To read and review the agreement, click here. In line with fair attribution and proper permissions, note any copyrights of materials cited in your paper. Do not use materials that are not fair use without express written consent.