Corporate security technologies: Managing life and death along a Colombian coal railway

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This article demonstrates how the security of an extractive corporation is related to the governance of the lives and deaths of local inhabitants living in the area around a large coalmine and its railway in Colombia. Making legible the corporate security technologies that manage railway mortality and work along a spectrum from “hard” to “soft”, this article explores the productivity of corporate security in relation to the lives and deaths of local populations. Offering a specific lens on corporate railway security, it shows how corporate security technologies influence not only the lives of local residents but also their deaths. The findings also suggest that deaths and/or suicides be understood as both a product of and a productive force for corporate territorialization. Drawing on conceptualizations of ‘social death’ from genocide studies and Foucauldian ideas about death and technologies of power, I discuss the implications of corporate sovereignty (deciding over lives and deaths) as a technology of the corporate protection of mining infrastructure that normalizes corporate territorialization and justifies corporate social control.
TidsskriftPolitical Geography
Udgave nummer83
StatusUdgivet - 2020

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