This course will explore anthropological approaches to the study of various forms of illegal activities. Denaturalizing the state-imposed categories of legality and illegality, the course will examine how the legal-illegal divide is constructed contingently, and unpack moralities, inequalities, precarities, and forms of politics that illegal activities both rely on and make possible. The course will bring together recent ethnographies of racketeering, gang violence, piracy, human trafficking and contraband smuggling from different world regions.
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