chapter  18
10 Pages

Surveillance as an Urban Way of Life

WithRoy Coleman

This chapter provides insight into the main theoretical tools developed to think about surveillance and its relationship to socio-spatial identities, divisions, and justice. Some might assume that surveillance is a seamless gaze of control and transparency. On the contrary, it is uneven and partial in practice. The kind of information and knowledge that surveillance accumulates reflects, reinforces, and sometimes challenges the interests and priorities of powerful ways of seeing the city and the people in it. At the heart of media technologies, surveillance involves watching and being watched in ubiquitous and semi-visible ways. Surveillance is connected to the right to visibility and invisibility as well as the right to urban habitation and belongingness in the city.