English 250

Research Seminar: Paranoid States: Empire and the Rise of the Surveillance State


Section Semester Instructor Time Location Course Areas
3 Fall 2017 Saha, Poulomi
W 3-6 107 Mulford

Other Readings and Media

Readings and films may include: Foucault, Discipline and Punish; Fanon, The Wretched of the Earth; LeFebvre, The Production of Space; Hardt & Negri, Empire; Orwell, 1984; Pontecorvo, Battle of Algiers; Scott, Seeing Like a State; McCoy, Policing America's Empire; Hathaway, The Real Glory

Description

This course examines the long, intimate relationship between technologies of surveillance and the making of British and American empires. While digital technology and state surveillance has been significant in the post-9/11 world, identifying, monitoring, and tracking populations and individuals has been central to the consolidation of state power for much longer. We will consider the development of technologies such as photography, fingerprinting, biometrics, and aerial drones in the context of their imbrication with imperial governance. Beginning in the late 19th century to the contemporary moment, this course will track the shifting forms that surveillance and the state take from the decline of British colonialism to the rise of American empire. It will look to South Asia, the Phillippines, North America, and the Middle East to ask how discourses of security, risk, and vulnerability have rationalized state policies of containment and scrutiny on the one hand, and justified and catalyzed the expansion of imperial power on the other.

This course satisfies the Group 6 (Non-historical) requirement.

Other Recent Sections of This Course

spring, 2020

250/1

Research Seminar: Ways of Knowing, Ways of Representing in Eighteenth-Century English Fiction

250/2

Research Seminar: Black Cultures of Gender and Sexuality

250/3

Research Seminar: Critique of Capitalism, or Reading Marx Now

fall, 2019

250/1

Research Seminar: The English Department

250/2

Research Seminar: Transcendentalism

spring, 2019

250/1

Research Seminar: Philosophical Idealizations of Art and Modernist Practices

fall, 2018

250/3

Research Seminar: Textual Communities and the Modern

250/4

Research Seminar: Evolution and Literary Form, 1800-1900

spring, 2018

250/2

Research Seminar: Ways of Knowing, Ways of Representing in Eighteenth-Century English Fiction

250/3

Research Seminar: Milton and the English Civil War

250/4

Research Seminar: The Rhetoric of Technique

250/5

Research Seminar: Black Abstraction

fall, 2017

250/1

Research Seminar: Victorian Cultural Studies

250/2

Research Seminar: How to Write a Book

250/4

Research Seminar: Gender, Sexuality, Modernism

spring, 2017

250/1

Research Seminar: Wordsworth and Coleridge in Collaboration

250/2

Research Seminar: Modernism in Poetry and in Art

250/3

Research Seminar: Idols and Ideology—Readings in Augustine, Milton, Marlowe, Shakespeare, Hobbes, Kant, Marx, Freud, Althusser


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