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Carceral Entrapments

Views from the Prison/Street Interface in India

Mahuya Bandyopadhyay

This article focuses on three overlapping layers. First, it illustrates multiple and incoherent expressions of the prison/street nexus in India through fieldwork in prison and a para (urban neighbourhood). Second, it argues that existing categories of understanding prison/street porousness – such as a ‘deadly symbiosis’, a continuum, liminality and a carceral state – are inadequate for explaining these expressions of the prison/street nexus in India, which is framed within chaotic environments. Consequently, I argue, there is a poverty of concepts in narrating the prison/street nexus in the global south more generally, and it stems from methodological concerns. Third, the article unravels the methodological lessons from the study of imprisoned populations to examine how these may be used to narrate urban marginality. I take recourse to Lorna Rhodes’ illustration of ‘blind fields’ and ‘punctums’, to show how these may be used to disrupt conventional and hegemonic narratives of urban marginality.

Open access

Kate Cairns

At the very time that I was reading Jan Newberry and Rachel Rosen’s “Women and Children Together and Apart,” young people around the world were organizing collectively to demand action on climate change. On 15 March 2019, children and youth in more than one hundred countries walked out of school in a coordinated act of defiance. Gathering in parks, public squares, and on the steps of government headquarters, their signs and chants decried the intergenerational violence of planetary destruction, demanding accountability from the world’s most powerful. As these young people make clear, the climate crisis is very much a crisis of social reproduction: the environmental devastation wrought by capitalist accumulation threatens the conditions for making and sustaining life, with particularly devastating consequences for the world’s most marginalized. In their organizing to demand political action to address this crisis, young people have shone a light on the multiple temporalities at stake: by withholding their labor as striking students, they refuse to produce value for a future that is increasingly under threat.

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M. Guadalupe Torres-Jiménez, Rene Murrieta-Galindo, Beatriz Bolívar-Cimé, Astrid Wojtarowski-Leal and M. Angeles Piñar-Álvarez

English abstract: The abuse of inorganic fertilizers in coffee agroecosystems is a worldwide problem. In central Mexico, organic fertilizers are being introduced as an alternative way to restore soil fertility. The aim of this study was to investigate coffee farmers from central Veracruz’s perceptions of bat guano as organic fertilizer. Surveys were conducted with closed and open questions followed by quantitative and qualitative analysis. Eighty-eight percent of the farmers surveyed negatively perceived bat guano. Factors influencing this perception were bats’ physical appearance, their role as disease transmitters, and the difficulties in procuring guano, including the resources needed to extract it, handle it, and transport it safely to their workplaces.

Spanish abstract: El abuso de fertilizantes inorgánicos en los agroecosistemas del café es un problema mundial. En el centro de México se comienzan a emplear fertilizantes orgánicos como alternativa para restaurar los suelos. El objetivo de este estudio fue investigar la percepción de los caficultores sobre el empleo del guano de murciélago como fertilizante. Se realizaron encuestas con preguntas abiertas y cerradas que se analizaron cuantitativa y cualtitativamente. El ochenta y ocho por ciento de los cafeticultores encuestados percibieron negativamente al guano de murciélago. Los factores que influyeron en esta percepción fueron: la apariencia física de los murciélagos, su rol como transmisores de enfermedades y las dificultades para adquirir el guano, incluyendo los recursos necesarios para extraerlo, manipularlo y transportarlo de manera segura a sus fincas cafetaleras.

French abstract: L’abus d’engrais inorganiques dans les agroécosystèmes de café est un problème mondial. Dans le centre du Mexique, les engrais biologiques commencent à être utilisés pour restaurer les sols. Notre recherche se proposait d’étudier la perception de l’utilisation du guano de chauve-souris comme engrais organique par les caféiculteurs. Des enquêtes semi-structurées (comprenant des questions ouvertes et fermées) ont été menées à partir de méthodes quantitatives et qualitatives. Quatrevingt-huit pour cent des agriculteurs interrogés perçoivent ce guano de manière négative. Parmi les facteurs qui influencent cette perception se trouvent l’apparence physique des chauves-souris, la transmission de maladies et les difficultés pour acquérir le guano, y compris les ressources nécessaires pour l’extraire, le manipuler et le transporter en toute sécurité vers leurs exploitations.

Free access

Harlan Koff and Carmen Maganda

Regional integration has significantly impacted sustainable development processes at the sub-national, supranational and interregional levels. Regions & Cohesion here has highlighted the complexity of interactions between policy arenas and actors/stakeholders at different levels of governance. Past articles have examined how regions can build bridges between policy arenas and levels of governance in different world regions with the objective of promoting sustainability.

Open access

Collapse

Fake buildings and gray development in Nairobi

Constance Smith

In Nairobi, the speed of urban growth is producing a parallel threat of architectural failure: in a recent spate of tower block collapses, many have died. Nairobians describe collapsed tower blocks as “fake,” referring to ideas of the counterfeit, as well as anxieties about morally suspect economies. Simultaneously, state-led development is re-envisioning Nairobi as a “world-class” city of spectacular infrastructure and gleaming high-rises. Though seemingly disconnected processes, the two are deeply entangled. Building on Africanist debates about the power of the double and the relationship between the surface and the underneath, I explore this superficially sleek but materially fragile landscape through a lens of “gray development,” complicating standard distinctions between the informal and the formal to uncover the underneath of Nairobi’s world-class fantasies.

Open access

Commitment, Convergence, Alterity

Muslim-Christian Comparison and the Politics of Distinction in the Netherlands

Daan Beekers

This contribution looks comparatively at the everyday pursuit of religious commitment among young, revivalist-oriented Sunni Muslims and Protestant Christians in the Netherlands. In both public debates and academic scholarship, the differences between these groups tend to be stressed, particularly through dichotomies such as migrant/native and minority/majority. This article, by contrast, takes their potential common ground as a starting point by examining the pursuit of religious aspirations under shared conditions of consumer capitalism and cultural pluralism. I argue that my Christian and Muslim interlocutors experienced a noticeably similar dynamic of constraint on and reinvigoration of their faith. Further, I note the different degrees to which they emphasized their moral distinctiveness, and discuss how this disparity is related to dominant public representations of these groups.

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Conceptualizing sub-national regional cooperation

Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia case study

Diana Morales

English abstract: Regional cooperation is a context-dependent process that is better understood using a geographical approach; this is, accounting for the region as part of the explanation for and not only as the container in which cooperative agreements operate. The case of the Coffee Cultural Landscape of Colombia, a bottom-up regional cooperation process that resulted in a regional trademark, illustrates what roles are played by a diversity of local actors and how local socio-economic conditions influence cooperation agreements. The case highlights the inadequacy of inflexible jurisdictional boundaries and the limitations of preexisting categories (such as inter-municipal cooperation or metropolitan areas). The empirical evidence includes the analysis of 19 semi-structured interviews.

Spanish abstract: La cooperación regional es un proceso que depende del contexto local y regional; y una perspectiva geográfica apoya a considerar la región donde ocurre como parte de la explicación, y no como un contenedor dentro del cual operan los acuerdos. Este artículo aborda el caso del Paisaje Cultural Cafetero Colombiano, un proceso de cooperación regional de abajo hacia arriba que resultó en una marca registrada regional. El caso ilustra participantes y roles en el proceso y cómo las condiciones socioeconómicas locales influyen en los acuerdos de cooperación. Los resultados destacan la inflexibilidad de las divisiones jurisdiccionales y las limitaciones de las categorías preexistentes (como la cooperación intermunicipal o las áreas metropolitanas). La metodología incluyó el análisis de 19 entrevistas semi-estructuradas.

French abstract: Les processus de coopération régionale dépendent de leur contexte et sont mieux appréhendés à travers une approche géographique. En d’autres termes, il est nécessaire de prendre en compte la région comme partie intégrante de l’analyse, et non uniquement en tant que simple structure où les accords de coopérations se déroulent. Le cas du Paysage culturel du café de Colombie, un processus de coopération régionale du bas vers le haut qui a abouti à la création d’une marque, illustre les rôles joués par une diversité d’acteurs locaux et comment les conditions socio-économiques influencent les accords de coopération. Il met en évidence l’inadéquation des frontières juridictionnelles inflexibles et les limites des catégories préexistantes (comme la coopération inter-municipale et les aires métropolitaines). La méthodologie repose sur une étude de cas et dix-neuf entretiens semi-directifs.

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Connecting and Disconnection

Exploring Prisoners' Relations with the Outside World in Myanmar

Andrew M. Jefferson and Tomas Max Martin

Drawing on a case study carried out in Myanmar, this article elaborates on the concept of connectivity as a rich and critical articulation of the way prisoners and their relatives develop and sustain relationships during incarceration. The notion of connectivity offers an alternative analytic frame to that provided by established notions of prisoner–family contact. Drawing primarily on interview data, we examine how people connect and disconnect in situations of chaos, control and surveillance; how they suffer under circumstances of not-knowing; and how they establish protective exchange relations. We illustrate the utility of the concept of connectivity for interrogating the fundamentally relational practice of imprisonment and show that common notions of inside and outside are partially deconstructed through prison actors’ agentic efforts to cut ties or tie strings across prison walls.

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Consuming Katniss

Spectacle and Spectatorship in The Hunger Games

Samantha Poulos

Catherine Driscoll and Alexandra Heatwole. 2018. The Hunger Games: Spectacle, Risk and the Girl Action Hero. London: Routledge.

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Stephanie Russo

Anne Boleyn has been narrativized in Young Adult (YA) historical fiction since the nineteenth century. Since the popular Showtime series The Tudors (2007–2010) aired, teenage girls have shown increased interest in the story of Anne Boleyn, Henry VIII’s second and most infamous queen. This construction of Boleyn suggests that she was both celebrated and punished for her proto-feminist agency and forthright sexuality. A new subgenre of Boleyn historical fiction has also recently emerged—YA novels in which her story is rewritten as a contemporary high school drama. In this article, I consider several YA novels about Anne Boleyn in order to explore the relevance to contemporary teenage girls of a woman who lived and died 500 years ago.