Paper proposals are sought for a collected volume titled "Stand Your Ground: Incarcerations, Lynchings, and Executions," edited by Chris Vanderwees and Percy Walton.
With 5% of the world’s population, the U.S. comprises 25% of the world’s prison population, or 724 prisoners per 100,000 people (Pleases, Vicky, BBC News, March 8, 2013); it is not surprising, therefore, that many American Studies scholars see the U.S. as a police state. In addition, the “Stand Your Ground” laws, in one form or another, have been implemented in 46 states. Since the perpetrators under these “self-defence rulings” tend to be White men, and the victims young black men, Stand Your Ground laws, in effect, allow for a new form of lynching. The U.S., of course, is also the only developed country in the world (with the exception of Japan), that still retains the death penalty, or, what David Garland calls: “America’s peculiar institution” (playing on the title of Kenneth M. Stampp’s 1956 book on slavery). We are interested in papers that explore the state of the U.S. prison system, prison writings, executions, and Stand your Ground laws, in any literary genre, in the hope of coming to some understanding of the social, cultural, and racial dynamics of discipline and punishment in the U.S. Currently, we have interest from a publisher and will seek to publish successful papers as an edited collection.
Please send a 500 word abstract (or completed papers) and a CV to Chris Vanderwees and Priscilla Walton. Completed papers will be given preference.
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