Handbook on the Geographies of Power


Handbook on the Geographies of Power

9781785365638 Edward Elgar Publishing
Edited by Mat Coleman Professor, Department of Geography, The Ohio State University, Columbus, Ohio and John Agnew, Distinguished Professor of Geography, Department of Geography, University of California, Los Angeles, US
Publication Date: 2018 ISBN: 978 1 78536 563 8 Extent: 432 pp
The so-called spatial turn in the social sciences means that many researchers have become much more interested in what can be called the spatialities of power, or the ways in which power as a medium for achieving goals is related to where it takes place. Most famous authors on the subject, such as Machiavelli and Hobbes, saw power as entirely equivalent to domination exercised by some over others. Though this meaning is hardly redundant, understandings of power have become more multidimensional and nuanced as a result of the spatial turn. Much recent writing in human geography, for example, has rigorously extended use of the term power beyond its typical understanding as a resource that pools up in some hands and some places to a medium of agency that has different effects depending on how it is deployed across space and how actors cooperate, or not, to give it effect. To address this objective, the book is organized thematically into four sections that cover the main areas in which much of the contemporary work on geographies of power is concentrated: bodies, economy, environment and energy, and war.

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The so-called ‘spatial turn’ in the social sciences has led to an increased interest in what can be called the spatialities of power, or the ways in which power as a medium for achieving goals is related to where it takes place. This unique and intriguing Handbook argues that the spatiality of power is never singular and easily modeled according to straightforward theoretical bullet-points, but instead is best approached as plural, contextually emergent and relational.

The Handbook on the Geographies of Power consists of a series of cutting edge chapters written by a diverse range of leading geographers working both within and beyond political geography. It is organized thematically into the main areas in which contemporary work on the geographies of power is concentrated: bodies, economy, environment and energy, and war.

The Handbook maintains a careful connection between theory and empirics, making it a valuable read for students, researchers and scholars in the fields of political and human geography. It will also appeal to social scientists more generally who are interested in contemporary conceptions of power.
Critical Acclaim
‘Reading the Handbook on the Geographies of Power, you feel like you are on a road trip to visit an old friend (or fiend, to some),especially if you have engaged in understanding, describing, or explaining the unequal geographies of the world. That friend/fiend is power, a pervasive concept in our daily lives, and in the existence of other living and inanimate objects.’
– Martín Arias-Loyola, Economic Geography

‘Handbook on the Geographies of Power is a well-written volume with empirically rich and theoretically well-grounded chapters that are easy to comprehend and will be greatly appreciated by academics and students.’
– Austin Dziwornu Ablo, Eurasian Geography and Economics
Contributors: J. Agnew, J. Allen, I. Ashutosh, J. Barkan, N. Bauch, L. Bhungalia, G. Boyce, B. Braun, M. Brown, P. Carmody, N. Clark, M. Coleman, K. Derickson, A.D. Dixon, V. Gidwani, E. Goldfischer, N. Gordon, M. Hird, P. Hubbard, J. Hyndman, J.M. Loyd, A. Mallory, A. Moore, L. Muscarà, N. Perugini, C. Rasmussen, P. Steinberg, K. Strauss, S. Wakefield, R. Wright, K. Yusoff

Part I Introduction

1. Introduction to the Handbook on the Geographies of Power
Mat Coleman and John Agnew

Part II Bodies
Mat Coleman

2. When Ethnography Meets Space
Ishan Ashutosh

3. Sex and Sexuality: Exploring the Geographies of Prostitution
Phil Hubbard

4. Spatial Technologies of Racialized Knowing: On Visuality, Measurement, and the Law
Robin Wright, Eric Goldfischer, Aaron Mallory and Kate Derickson

5. “This Wack(Yhut) Idea!!!”: The Plantation Bloc and Political Economy of Prison Expansion in Louisiana
Jenna M. Loyd

6. Human, All too Human, Geographies
Claire Rasmussen and Michael Brown

Part III Economy
John Agnew

7. Reflections on the Power in and the Power of Financial Markets
Adam D. Dixon

8. Corporate–state relations in the age of Trumpism: analytical problems with the neoliberal synthesis and some potential ways forward
Joshua Barkan

9. Reproduction, Justice and Spatialities of Power
Kendra Strauss

10. Abstract and Concrete Labor in the Age of Informality
Vinay Gidwani

11. The Circulation of Financial Elites
John Allen

Part IV Energy And Environment
Mat Coleman

12. The Anthropocene and Geographies of Geopower
Kathryn Yusoff

13. The Power of Water
Philip Steinberg

14. Animated Place: Invisible Industrial Technologies and the Shaping of Eating Bodies
Nicholas Bauch

15. Microontologies and the Politics of Emergent Life
Nigel Clark and Myra Hird

16. Destituent Power and Common Use: Reading Agamben in the Anthropocene
Bruce Braun and Stephanie Wakefield

Part V Warfare
John Agnew

17. Human Shields and the Political Geography of International Humanitarian Law
Neve Gordon and Nicola Perugini

18. Matrix Governance and Imperialism
Pádraig Carmody

19. Governing Banishment: Settler Colonialism, Territory, and Life in an Economy of Death
Lisa Bhungalia

20. Military Contracting and the Labor of Force Projection
Adam Moore

21. Autonomy, Human Vulnerability and the Volumetric Composition of US Border Policing
Geoff Boyce

22. Maps, Complexity, and the Uncertainty of Power
Luca Muscarà

23. To Help or Not to Help? Humanitarian Spaces, Power, and Government
Jennifer Hyndman

24. Power’s Outsides
Mat Coleman and John Agnew


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