Goldstein, D. M. (2012), Outlawed: Between Security and Rights in a Bolivian
City (Durham: Duke University Press), 344 pp., 9 photographs, 1 map,
ISBN: 978-0-8223-5311-9 (paperback).
Daniel M. Goldstein’s Outlawed: Between Security and Rights in a Bolivian
City (2012) is a thickly described and richly detailed ethnography of
uncertainty in the barrios of Cochabamba, Bolivia. It holds important
insights for legal anthropology, particularly where the sub-discipline
intersects with the anthropology of the state and the anthropology of
human rights. The ethnographic detail is exemplary, with the work here
having serious implications for anthropological theory and opening up
several avenues for further investigation. That it opens new debates more
than it offers cohesive answers – as is, admittedly, possibly fitting for the
‘uncertain anthropology’ that Goldstein advocates – both is the prime
strength of the work and can be offered as a gentle critique. I consider
this to be because of the ambitious breadth of the work to the extent that
directions that were implied were ultimately left somewhat unexplored.
This review article is an attempt to consider the prime contributions of
Outlawed and to tentatively map some of these implied connections.