PoLAR: Political and Legal Anthropology Review

States of Insecurity: Everyday Emergencies, Public Secrets, and Drug Trafficker Power in a Brazilian Favela

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Abstract

This article analyzes how drug traffickers and police in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, co-participate in the creation of a state of (in)security in the city's poor neighborhoods. I draw on ethnographic research to argue that drug traffickers dominate Rio's favelas (squatter neighborhoods) by producing everyday emergencies (or “ordered disorder”) and by deliberately manipulating secrecy.

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