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Title:All good plans go up in smoke
Author(s):Sherman, Stephen A.
Subject(s):Urban & Regional Planning
Abstract:I moved to Atlanta in August 2017 to begin my dissertation research on neighborhood change and policing near urban universities, with Georgia Tech as one field site. One month after my research began, a GTPD officer shot and killed Scout Schultz, a student and LGBTQIA+ activist. Two days after the shooting, I found myself at a protest on campus (shown here) in which a GTPD officer took a hammer to his head, and a protestor blew up a cop car. The tired aphorism about qualitative methods, that "you never know what you'll find in the field!", was spelled out in smoke above a torched cop car. Afterwards, the fraught symbolism of police - are they protectors or agitators? friends or foes? - came to the fore in my interviews, and I found that to understand the political economy of policing, I absolutely needed to account for the ambivalence with which the public experiences police in everyday life. I did this through the geo-narrative approach of Dr. Mei-Po Kwan, which entailed my student subjects keeping a GPS-logged “walking diary” of their experience as a policed subject.
Issue Date:2018-04
Rights Information:Copyright 2018 Stephen Sherman
Date Available in IDEALS:2018-04-23

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