Surveillance and Space
- Francisco Klauser - Université de Neuchatel, Switzerland
Society and Space
Political Geography | Political Geography
The digital age is also a surveillance age. Today, computerized systems protect and manage our everyday life; the increasing number of surveillance cameras in public places, the computerized loyalty systems of the retail sector, geo-localized smart-phone applications, or smart traffic and navigation systems. Surveillance is nothing fundamentally new, and yet more and more questions are being asked:
- Who monitors whom, and how and why?
- How do surveillance techniques affect socio-spatial practices and relationships?
- How do they shape the fabrics of our cities, our mobilities, the spaces of the everyday?
- And what are the implications in terms of border control and the exercise of political power?
Surveillance and Space responds to these modern questions by exploring the complex and varied interactions between surveillance and space. In doing so, the book also advances a programmatic reflection on the very possibility of a ‘political geography of surveillance’.
Questions of surveillance are always also questions of geography. From the famous disciplinary spaces of Bentham's panoptic prison projects to today's control societies based on millions of sensors, cameras and data capture devices spread across the world, perspectives from critical geography offer massive potential for understanding surveillance societies. And yet, remarkably, this pivotal and state-of-the art book is the first to really consider the intersections of geography and surveillance with real depth and clarity. Theoretically cutting-edge, politically astute, technologically informed, athletically multiscaled -- 'Surveillance and Space' is a remarkable analysis and is a 'must read' for anyone interested in the fast-moving politics and geographies of surveillance in contemporary societies.
This book engages with the timely and significant debate around surveillance, space and power. These three elements have been recognized as crucial since the works of Foucault, but a lot has changed since, especially when it comes to IT-based techniques of control. This book discusses the contemporary political geography of surveillance and the surveillance–space nexus in many different contexts. Firmly grounded in previous understandings, Klauser examines the multifaceted ways in which space makes a difference to the exercise and experience of surveillance. His perspective expands from the Anglophone world to German and French research, and is thus unique. Especially the works of Sloterdijk and Raffestin deeply enrichen the current theories of surveillance and space. Klauser has an exceptional ability to bring scholars from different times, cultures and disciplines into ‘discussion’, resulting in constructive new understandings. These brave theoretical conceptualizations are supported by several illustrative empirical case studies, for example, on airports and mega-events. Klauser maps the new geographies of surveillance with great skill and deep understanding, resulting in a work that is essential reading for every surveillance studies researcher and student.
Sample Materials & Chapters
Klauser - Surveillance & Space - Chapter 1