The Western Hemisphere is a violent place: drug wars in Mexico, street gangs in Central A merica, mass killings in the United States, and everywhere soaring rates of violent crime. What kinds of responses are emerging to problems of law, order, and public security in the Americas? How are these responses reshaping our societies? To what extent is the current situation the legacy of failed security policies? What is the role of the police and policing in all of this? This class adopts an anthropological perspective on the practice of policing. It looks at policing as the production of law and order-not just by local cops on the beat but also by actors involved in national and international security. The focus is on the Western Hemisphere and the influence of the United States on the ideals, institutions, and practices of policing. Key topics include: immigration, incarceration, deportation, frontiers, the movement of licit and illicit goods, democratic rights, and the regional impact of U.S. security initiatives including the Cold War, the War on Drugs, and the War on Terrorism. These topics will be grounded in studies of policing and police reform in the United States, Brazil, Colombia, Guatemala, and Mexico. By the end of the semester, students will have a working knowledge of critical issues in contemporary policing as well as the legal, socio-cultural, and economic factors behind the emerging models of police in the Americas.
Location & Meeting Time
Wold Center-225+ T/TH 01:55PM-03:40PM LEC