CIRCUITS AND CONSEQUENCES OF DISPOSSESSION: THE RACIALIZED REALIGNMENT OF THE PUBLIC SPHERE FOR U.S. YOUTH

Authors

  • Michelle Fine,

  • Jessica Ruglis


Abstract

As critical scholars of public education and mass incarceration, we witness in our daily work the soft coercive migration of youth of color, especially poor youth of color, out of sites of public education and into militarized and carceral corners of the public sphere. We watch as educators and youth try to negotiate conditions of systematic miseducation, criminalization, and the scientism of high-stakes testing. And we observe how ideologies about merit, deservingness, and blame drip feed into the soul, tagging some bodies as worthy and others as damaged. We write this essay to make visible this critical geography of youth development and dispossession. Signaling how public dollars, ideologies, and opportunities map onto adolescent bodies and redistribute their dreams and aspirational capacities, we draw from multiple sources and disciplines to articulate the raced and classed capillaries and consequences of this new imperialism at home on U.S. soil. Specifically we use a wide range of data sources, disciplines, and research methods to demonstrate the deep penetration of youth dispossession through state sanctioned policies or the state's oversight; either option having the same value outcome—the dispossession of Black, Brown, immigrant and poor bodies.

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