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The logics and dynamics of social and spatial control over lower-class youths – SpaceControl

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Submission summary

The logics and dynamics of social and spatial control over lower-class youths
Abstract
Our project is entitled “The logics and dynamics of social and spatial control over lower-class youths”. Its originality lies in three innovative elements.
First, it relies on the work of an interdisciplinary and international team from four disciplines (sociology, geography, political science, and history) and five countries since it will benefit from established scientific collaborations with Brazilian colleagues and specialists from Belgium and the Netherlands, with the aim of systemising comparative approaches.
Our research programme also aims at renewing the description and the analysis of the social issue seen though the two complementary questions of the urban issue and the penal process issue. More precisely, it intends to study the logics and changes that underlie social control over the lower classes through the situations of teenagers and by focusing on the conditions and on the methods of their territorial administration in an urban (open) context on the one hand and in an institutional (closed) prison context on the other. The crux of the matter is to start an analysis of the social issue based on two contrasting spaces, namely the city and its deprived areas, and prisons and youths detention centres. We will be studying the contemporary problems of (social) exclusion and spatial seclusion as well as the related public policies in two distinct configurations in terms of institutional setting: the first configuration is defined by the exertion of direct physical constraint in closed contexts such as prisons or detention centres for juvenile offenders and the other one is defined by more indirect, more diffuse and more fragmented social control mechanisms in open contexts such as the city. The research project also intends to look at the issue of their respective “frontiers” and to analyse the ways those two spaces interlock.
Thirdly, this research programme suggests a new combination of several methods of investigation with a view to creating original quantitative and qualitative data. It will resort to direct observations (urban and prison ethnography), to in-depth interviews (individual and group life stories), to a confrontation of documentary analysis and statistical analysis (we will establish corpuses drawn from the examination of penal records in France and Brazil, from a comparison of the variations of juvenile justice in both countries, and from individual penitentiary records, from the analysis of architectural plans), and to the examination of archives from the institutions in charge of setting up and implementing urban renewal policies in Brussels, Lille, and Montreal.
We expect results at three different levels:
- First, we will seek to publish articles in national and international high-quality academic journals – we will put the emphasis on international and general journals, and on journals which specialise in urban or prison issues, not forgetting popular media outside academia.
- Second, we hope to generate an interdisciplinary and an international synergy in research on the urban issue and on deviance which would reinforce the investment of our team in the European group of research on normativities (EGRN, GRD-E CNRS).
- Third, we wish to strengthen the links between acaademic research and university training such as “Political science and public action” masters programme (which has an “urban policies” speciality) at the University of Lille2, the new masters programme which focuses on “the city: social anthropology of spaces and territories” at the University of Lille1, and the formation programmes of the Roubaix Higher institute of juvenile judicial protection managerial staff.

Project coordinator

Monsieur DOMINIQUE DUPREZ (CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE - DELEGATION REGIONALE NORD-PAS-DE-CALAIS ET PICARDIE) – dominique.duprez@univ-lille1.fr

The author of this summary is the project coordinator, who is responsible for the content of this summary. The ANR declines any responsibility as for its contents.

Partner

MESHS - CLERSE CENTRE NATIONAL DE LA RECHERCHE SCIENTIFIQUE - DELEGATION REGIONALE NORD-PAS-DE-CALAIS ET PICARDIE

Help of the ANR 249,000 euros
Beginning and duration of the scientific project: - 36 Months

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