Carceral Space: Prisoners and Animals

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This paper develops a framework for exploring resonances across human and nonhuman carceral geographies. I illustrate the close linkages across prisoner and animal carcerality and captivity focusing on three types of sites and institutions: the prison execution chamber and the animal slaughterhouse; sites of laboratory testing of pharmaceutical and other products on incarcerated humans and captive animals; and sites and institutions of exploited prisoner and animal labor. The main themes that call for a ‘carceral comparison’ among these sites include: the emotional and psychological strain and violence enacted on bodies that is interwoven into their day-to-day operations; their geographies (locations, design and layout) and carefully regulated movements within them; relationships between carcerality and ‘purpose breeding’ that extends across both nonhuman and human populations; the ways in which ‘animalization’ of incarcerated bodies works to create conditions for social death and killability; and the legal and political contexts that produce certain lives as disposable ‘bare lives’.


Antipode: A Radical Journal of Geography



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