Protesting police

Paul Mutsaers, Tom van Nuenen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


We offer an anthropological response to criminologists’ call for a penal theory of police, with a specific focus on the public condonation of police punishment. We support such a penal theory but criticize the criminologist’s explanation of the relative quiescence of “the public” in the face of police punishment. We do so by (1) centralizing anti-police protest instead of acceptance of police punishment; (2) raising the epistemological question “how do we know protest?” and (3) addressing the importance of studying “hashtag activism” in anti-police protest. Central to our thesis is Scott’s theory of hidden transcripts and the infrapolitics of resistance.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationThe Anthropology of Police
EditorsKevin Karpiak, William Garriott
Number of pages19
ISBN (Print)9781138919655
Publication statusPublished - 2018

Publication series

NameFrontiers of Criminal Justice


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