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Counter-carceral acoustemologies: sound, permeability and feminist protest at the prison boundary
journal contributionposted on 2020-05-01, 00:00 authored by Emma Russell, Bree Carlton
This article provides an analysis of sonic protest strategies used by anti-carceral feminist coalitions in Melbourne, Australia. Our research demonstrates that sound is a particularly powerful boundary-crosser that can challenge the exclusionary spatial ordering of the prison. Under certain political and geographical conditions, the carceral soundscape, which increasingly restricts ‘who gets to hear what’, can be temporarily breached, altered and re-made by protest noise, rhythm and music, and radio technology. Counter-carceral acoustemologies create alternative ‘soundtracks’ of resistance that both reveal and momentarily displace carceral-spatial control, re-patterning the aural environment of the prison. Such breaches can be countered, however, by various modes of boundary fortification over time. We propose that a more nuanced understanding of carceral space and soundscapes—as relational and in flux—provides greater opportunities for denaturalizing the prison and challenging its seeming permanence in our political and cultural landscapes.
Pagination296 - 313
Publication classificationC1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice2018, The Author(s)
Social SciencesCriminology & PenologyAbolitionanti-carceral feminismcarceral spacepermeabilityresistancesocial movementssonic criminologysoundwomen in prisonTOTAL INSTITUTIONGEOGRAPHIESPOWERPOLITICSAbolition, anti-carceral feminism, carceral space, permeability, resistance, social movements, sonic criminology, sound, women in prisonLaw