• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

The SAGE Handbook of Political Geography provides students of the sub-discipline with a highly contextualized and systematic overview of the latest thinking and research. Edited by key scholars, with international contributions from acknowledged authorities on the relevant research, The SAGE Handbook of Political Geography is divided into six sections: Scope and Development of Political Geography; Geographies of the State; Participation and Representation; Political Geographies of Difference; Geography, Policy, and Governance; and Global Political Geographies.

Coercion, Territoriality, Legitimacy: The Police and the Modern State
Coercion, territoriality, legitimacy: The police and the modern state
Introduction

Two different places, two similar stories.

The first place: the English Midlands in the mid-1980s. Protests over closures of coal-mining operations led to a protracted labour struggle. One key site of the struggle was Nottinghamshire, where leaders of the National Union of Mineworkers sought to wage a massive strike. Determined to prevail, the British government unleashed a police response of unprecedented size and scope. Thousands of officers mobilized a military-style operation, including ‘a centralized command structure, para-military crowd dispersal tactics, and a massive system of roadblocks’ (Blomley, 1994: 156). These roadblocks were set up primarily to prevent coal workers from effecting a ‘flying picket’ strategy, whereby they would move ...

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