Offering a diagnostic global perspective on police brutality, Towards Anti-policing: Prefiguring Possibilities beyond the Thin Blue Line raises critical questions about whether policing is needed at all and what underlying purpose it actually serves. In this post-pandemic era, where the grip of authoritarianism has only tightened, Towards Anti-policing positions radical grassroots activism as a first line of critical defiance against the ‘Fear Terror Paradigm’ of policing logics and the pervasive brutality that this form of community control represents.
Simon Springer is professor of human geography at the University of Newcastle, Australia.
Richard J. White is reader in human geography at Sheffield Hallam University, UK.
Introduction: Taking a Bite out of Policing: Anarchist Currents Against Brutality, by Simon Springer and Richard J. White
Chapter 1. Global Confidence in Police: An Analysis of Anarchist Possibilities, by Dana M. Williams
Chapter 2: Everybody Wants to Be a Cop, by Christos Marneros
Chapter 3: Policing Ecocide, by Andrea Brock and Nathan Stephens-Griffin
Chapter 4: Emptying Cages: Abolition, Accountability and Dialogue, by Carissa Honeywell
Chapter 5: Police Violence in Brazil: Counterrevolution and Necropolitics, by Antonio Pele and Natália Baldessar Menezes
Chapter 6: The Technology of Control - A Guide to “Less Lethal” Police Weaponry, by Tom Raue
Chapter 7: Timelines, Databases, and People’s Investigations: Community Safety in the Fourth World War, by Manuel Callahan and Annie Paradise
Chapter 8: Beating People into (In)Submission: The Chilean Insurrection for a Dignified Life against the Prime Neoliberal State, by Martín Arias-Loyola
Chapter 9: The Persistent Coloniality of Police Brutality in the Caribbean: Race, Class, and Socio-spatialised State Violence in Urban Trinidad, by Johannah-Rae Reyes, Shelda-Jane Smith, Cara Mattu, and Levi Gahman
Chapter 10: ‘SSRUC—We Hate the Cops’: Punk Responses to the Police in Belfast, Northern Ireland, by Ian Senjury and Conn Tenchis
Chapter 11: Hunt Sabotage, Anarchism and the Policing of Hunting in the UK, by Will Boisseau
Chapter 12: ‘The Beating Heart of the Ruling Party’: On the Social and Political Functions of the Police in a State of Right-Wing Populists and a Triple-Masters Class, by Piotr Żuk
Chapter 13: Challenging the Thin Blue Line: An Interview with a Former Police Officer, by Rhon Teruelle
About the Contributors
“Edited by two leading scholars in anarchist geographies, Simon Springer and Richard J. White, this book is a cry for freedom against the brutality of constituted powers and all associated dogmatisms, militarisms, and fanaticisms, even when they are styled as ‘alternative’. A cry that concerns everybody who wants to make scholarship a socially relevant practice.”
"Towards Anti-policing does what a lot of criticisms of policing struggle to do—it articulates a critique of the institution and its practices while also giving hope and possible trajectories for a post-policing future. There is depth in careful analysis alongside breadth of case studies, themes, and contexts across the Global North and South. It is a work of real scholarly merit, and can be read as such, but perhaps more importantly it is a curation of incisive imaginaries and visions. The police hold together many intersecting structures and relations of unequal power, and unravelling these threads of power is one of the central matters of the global permacrisis we face."
“Impeccably researched and persuasively argued, Towards Anti-policing confronts the horror that is contemporary policing. As the book shows, state policing stands consistently on the wrong side of history, enforcing racialized hierarchies, deploying deadly technologies, and blocking progressive social change. Impressively international in scope, Towards Anti-policing documents the global nature of this police violence, while exploring global alternatives to policing as well. In fact, with its spirit of anarchist defiance, this book will make you think and make you mad—but it will ultimately give you hope for building a better world beyond the police.”