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Title:Pinkerton's National Detective Agency and the information work of the nineteenth-century surveillance state
Author(s):Bilansky, Alan
Subject(s):Surveillance state, Security, Network, Detective, Reports, Spy
Abstract:Private security contractor for business and government, Allan Pinkerton acted centrally in early chapters of the history of the security state. The operative and the report, Pinkerton’s principal surveillance technologies, are analyzed here in relation to each other and in their historical development as information technology, drawing on Pinkerton's fictionalized accounts of cases, secret reports and other Agency documents. Pinkerton management was consistently preoccupied with strict compliance of operatives, their deployment in a network, and the regular submission of reports. This study suggests information can lead to uncertainty and the surveillance state was and is compartmentalized, entrepreneurial, and other-than-public.
Issue Date:2017-08-12
Publisher:University of Texas Press
Citation Info:Alan Bilansky. "Pinkerton's National Detective Agency and the Information Work of the Nineteenth-Century Surveillance State." Information and Culture: A Journal of History (2018). Preprint.
Date Available in IDEALS:2017-08-14

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