Carceral Geography by Dominique Moran

By Dominique Moran

The so-called ‘punitive turn’ has caused new methods of brooding about geography and the nation, and has highlighted areas of incarceration as a brand new terrain for exploration through geographers. This booklet introduces ‘carceral geography’ as a geographical standpoint on incarceration, monitoring the information, practices and engagements that experience formed the advance of this new and colourful sub-discipline, and suggesting destiny learn instructions that are dynamically open to transdisciplinarity, that are either educated via and expand theoretical advancements in geography, yet which additionally, and severely, interface with modern debates over hyperincarceration, recidivism and the development of the punitive kingdom. This booklet conveys a feeling of the debates, instructions, and threads in the box of carceral geography, tracing the internal workings of this dynamic box, its synergies with criminology and legal sociology, and its most likely destiny trajectories. through synthesizing current paintings in carceral geography, and by means of exploring the long run instructions it may possibly take, the ebook develops a concept of the ‘carceral’ as spatial, emplaced, cellular, embodied and affective.

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Whilst this previous section of this chapter has considered physical spaces of incarceration, the discussion which follows explores the embodied experience of incarceration, which is deeply connected to the experience of carceral space – the physical body being the means by which spaces are directly experienced. 1 The Embodied Inscription of Incarceration In her work on the ageing female body in prison, Wahidin (2002: 178) used a Foucauldian analysis to demonstrate how discourses act upon and inscribe the female body, with the body held in a carceral prism in which power relations have an immediate hold over those under the prison gaze.

The front and back stages to which they refer derive from Goffman (1959) and Giddens’ (1984) notions; ‘frontstage’ being the public aspect of identity presented in social engagement with others, and ‘backstage’ being the restoration of the interior sense of self where ‘frontstage’ performance is no longer demanded (Jewkes 2005). ‘Frontstage’ and ‘backstage’ are very familiar concepts within criminology, with scholars widely observing that inmates adopt façades while ‘inside’, that this ‘front’ is impossible to sustain indefinitely, and that the facility to ‘be oneself’ at some point is essential for prisoner wellbeing.

This counter-conduct or critical attitude bears close resemblance to what in Asylums (1961) Erving Goffman termed ‘secondary adjustments’ – a set of improvised means, and use by prisoners of resources such as material objects, times and places, to preserve a certain degree of autonomy, often in a clandestine manner. As for Foucault, who saw counter conduct and critical attitude as immanent within and critical to governmentality, in Goffman’s theorisation, the ‘total institution’ Carceral Space 27 and its insubordinate underlife were intrinsically bound together.

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