Author Archives: Teo Ballvé

Interweb Motley # 18

Building the new surveillance state. And guess what? You’re doing it right now. Scary when it’s all laid out for you. God-tricking super-max prisons in the U.S.? Or visually representing how prison design and architecture “reflect political discourse, economic priorities, … Continue reading

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Bureaucracy is Beautiful? Or Death by Papelismo

Kyle Grayson’s Chasing Dragons pointed me to this extraordinary gallery of photographs called “Bureaucratics” by photographer Jan Banning. I recognized one of them (left): it graces the cover of Akhil Gupta’s new book Red Tape: Bureaucracy, Structural Violence, and Poverty in … Continue reading

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Hugo Chávez’s legacy: A more independent Latin America

My column on Chávez’s death published in McClatchy-Tribune newspapers: Hugo Chavez proved that Venezuela and the rest of Latin America could chart an independent path in the world. The Venezuelan leader, who died on March 5, often assumed the role … Continue reading

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Medellín: Who’s Afraid of Hip-Hop?

My article on hip-hop and violence in Medellín is now out: Héctor Pacheco walked down the steep hillsides of his barrio in Medellín, Colombia to wish his aunt a happy birthday. Pacheco—a local rapper nicknamed “Kolacho”—had spoken at a public … Continue reading

Posted in Art, Boundaries, City, Drugs, Everyday Life, Frontiers, Insurgency/Counterinsurgency, Security, Spatiality, Territory, Terror, The State, Violence | Comments Off on Medellín: Who’s Afraid of Hip-Hop?

Althusser, Gramsci and Machiavelli – Us and Us

Debate in the geograsphere. Jon Beasley-Murray published a riff on Louis Althusser’s Machiavelli and Us saying he detects a post-hegemonic streak in Althusser’s take on Machiavelli with an emphasis on the aleatory, contingent, and the conjunctural rather than a “telos of the … Continue reading

Posted in Antonio Gramsci, Dialectics, Hegemony, Historical Materialism, Marxism, Nation/Nationalism, Niccolo Machiavelli, Power, The State | 6 Comments

Likey Likey?

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Interweb Motley # 17

My friend Vijay Prashad’s new book is out with Verso. The Poorer Nations: A Possible History of the Global South, which examines the prospects of a global power shift from north to south, is a sequel to The Darker Nations, which is … Continue reading

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Narco-Geographies, Part III: Urban Speculation and Spectacle

(Final post in a three-part series, Part I, Part II)  The policies that have made Panama into a commercial and financial global entrepôt have also made this small country into an ideal beachhead for entrepreneurial narcotraffickers. The seemingly ethereal nature … Continue reading

Posted in City, Development, Drugs, Elites, Guy Debord, Illegality, Political Economy, Spatiality, Spectacle | Comments Off on Narco-Geographies, Part III: Urban Speculation and Spectacle

Cities in Conflict

The news site openDemocracy.net has launched a special series on “Cities and Conflict.” With stuff on spatial resistance, warspace, security, military urbanism, and urban uprisings, the series should be of interest to geographers, urbanists, and the spatially inclined in general. … Continue reading

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Interweb Motley # 16

Words Without Borders, a site that translates contemporary world literature into English, has a new issue out showcasing graphic novels on “topics ranging from the Spanish Civil War to the Shining Path, organized labor in France and broken homes in … Continue reading

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