CFP: Infrastructures Of Eviction
RGS-IBG 2018, Cardiff, UK 28-31st August
Sponsored by Urban Geography Research Group
Dr. Alex Baker (Durham University) and Dr. Alex Vasudevan (University of Oxford)
Research on housing and forced evictions has traditionally focused on the causes and outcomes of eviction cycles set against a backdrop of housing precarity. In recent years, there has been a growing interest, however, in documenting the infrastructures and technologies which facilitate and manage eviction. New studies have pointed to the tools of financialisation and financial software that regulate tenant behaviour (Fields, 2017), the labour economies and ‘eviction industries’ that profit from removing evicted persons (Purser, 2014; Paton and Cooper, 2016) and the forms of emotional labour and security work involved in creating or resisting eviction (Desmond, 2016; Lancione 2017). There is also a growing interest in eviction securitisation, which has clear linkages to studies of armed conflict and colonial domination which have emphasised the home as the target of specialised violence (Khalili, 2012, Belcher, 2017). This work has made clear the way in which a land and housing market is dependent on, and facilitated by, coercive technologies of forced eviction.
In this session we seek to bring together geographers who have been working in fields such as housing financialisation, social movement studies, police and security geographies, and geopolitics, where eviction enforcement is concerned. Building on a broad understanding of infrastructures as “the living mediation of what organises life” (Berlant, 2016), we aim to explore both the physical and immaterial processes that facilitate, mediate and orchestrate forced eviction.
We therefore invite papers that explore the disagreeable materialities of dispossession and eviction. These might include:
- Specialist state or private agencies and practices of eviction, such as military, paramilitary, policing and law enforcement agencies.
- ‘Eviction Industries’ that profit from facilitating displacements such as private security
- Secondary eviction labour markets, such as locksmiths, removal crews, and waste management.
- Racialised and gendered violence in eviction enforcement
- Softwares and hardwares that facilitate and manage evictions
- Global circuits and economies of specialist eviction enforcement knowledges and technologies
- Colonial and post-colonial policing, and military-civilian exchange in housing evictions and demolitions
- Tactile and emotional labour, and/or embodied memory in eviction enforcement
- Eviction-entertainment complexes, such as reality TV shows.