Surveillance happens to all of us, everyday, as we walk beneath street cameras, swipe cards, surf the net. Agencies are using increasingly sophisticated computer systems - especially searchable databases - to keep tabs on us at home, work and play. Once the word surveillance was reserved for police activities and intelligence gathering, now it is an unavoidable feature of everyday life.

Surveillance as Social Sorting proposes that surveillance is not simply a contemporary threat to individual freedom, but that, more insidiously, it is a powerful means of creating and reinforcing long-term social differences. As practiced today, it is actually a form of social sorting - a means of verifying identities but also of assessing risks and assigning worth. Questions of how categories are constructed therefore become significant ethical and political questions.

Bringing together contributions from North America and Europe, Surveillance as Social Sorting offers an innovative approach to the interaction between societies and their technologies. It looks at a number of examples in depth and will be an appropriate source of reference for a wide variety of courses.

chapter |10 pages


ByDavid Lyon

part |2 pages

Part I Orientations

chapter 1|18 pages

Surveillance as social sorting

Computer codes and mobile bodies
ByDavid Lyon

chapter 2|26 pages

Theorizing surveillance

The case of the workplace
ByElia Zureik

chapter 3|18 pages

Biometrics and the body as information: normative issues of the socio-technical coding of the body

Normative issues of the socio- technical coding of the body
ByIrma van der Ploeg

part |2 pages

PART II Verifying identities: constituting life-chances

chapter 4|17 pages

Electronic identity cards and social classification

ByFelix Stalder, David Lyon

chapter 5|17 pages

Surveillance creep in the genetic age

ByDorothy Nelkin, Lori Andrews

chapter 6|24 pages

“Racial” categories and health risks

Epidemiological surveillance among Canadian First Nations
ByJennifer Poudrier

part |2 pages

PART III Regulating mobilities: places and spaces

chapter 7|16 pages

Privacy and the phenetic urge

Geodemographics and the changing spatiality of local practice
ByDavid Phillips, Michael Curry

chapter 8|23 pages

People and place

Patterns of individual identification within intelligent transportation systems
ByColin Bennett, Charles Raab, Priscilla Regan

chapter 9|23 pages

Netscapes of power

Convergence, network design, walled gardens, and other strategies of control in the information age
ByDwayne Winseck

part |2 pages

PART IV Targeting trouble: social divisions

chapter 10|25 pages

Categorizing the workers

Electronic surveillance and social ordering in the call center
ByKirstie Ball

chapter 11|23 pages

Private security and surveillance

From the “dossier society” to database networks
ByGreg Marquis

chapter 12|33 pages

From personal to digital

CCTV, the panopticon, and the technological mediation of suspicion and social control
ByClive Norris