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upcoming book: policing black bodies by angela j. hattery and earl smith

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hattery smith book cover

I recently got to see a draft of Policing Black Bodies by Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith. It’s coming out soon from Rowman and Littlefield. It’s a historical approach to the issue of how law enforcement is used to monitor and control African Americans. It’s organized around the development of specific institutions (e.g., modern mass incarceration or the school to prison pipeline debate) and is a really thoughtful overview of this topic.

For me, I thought one interesting chapter was about the policing of trans people. Though I knew about the topic, it was helpful to read an extended discussion. Trans people are subject to policing in distinctive ways. Since many are ejected from their homes as youth, they may be homeless and thus have a lot of contact with police. Also, in prison, they may subject to physical abuse dues to the fact that they are gender non-conforming.

Overall, books like Policing Black Bodies remind us that police and prisons aren’t just about arrests and courts. Rather, the criminal justice system is one that interacts with people all through their lives and continues to extract a toll as people spend years of their life in prison.

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Written by fabiorojas

July 11, 2018 at 5:18 pm

Posted in uncategorized

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