The History of the Military- and Prison-Industrial Complex

Eugene Lang College Lib Arts: History

Liberal Arts

Undergraduate Course

Degree Students

Hist of Military & Prison Ind

Spring 2020

Taught By: Tejasvi Nagaraja

Section: A

CRN: 7094

Credits: 4

Why has U.S. mass incarceration become durable? Why does the United States have such a militarized economy and foreign policy? How do these resilient ‘systems’ reproduce themselves, and why do they seem stubbornly impervious to any challenge? Across scholarly and popular realms, the notion of an ‘-industrial complex’ has been used to conceptualize a multi-layered nexus of forces which permanently entrench a certain infrastructure and agenda. Since the 1960s, ‘military-industrial complex’ has been used to critically analyze the post-1940 U.S. warfare state. Since the 1990s, ‘prison-industrial complex’ has been used to critically analyze the post-1970 U.S. carceral state. In this course, we will study the political, economic, social and cultural history of these two ‘-industrial complexes’—across bipartisan politics, government bureaucracies, economic context, interest-group advocacy and social movements. In parallel, we will examine the intellectual history of diverse efforts to analyze what exactly is meant by an '-industrial complex’—as policymakers, scholars and activists observed each process’s unfolding across locales and decades. We will consider if there are other credible notions of another ‘-industrial complex’: healthcare, beauty, charity, media, education, etc. And, we’ll stay tuned to how relevant debates about military defense and criminal justice are playing out in the 2020 election.

College: Eugene Lang College Lib Arts (LC)

Department: History (LHIS)

Campus: New York City (GV)

Course Format: Seminar (R)

Max Enrollment: 18

Add/Drop Deadline: February 3, 2020 (Monday)

Online Withdrawal Deadline: April 12, 2020 (Sunday)

Seats Available: Yes

Status: Closed*

*Status information is updated every five minutes. The status of this course may have changed since the last update. Open seats may have restrictions that will prevent some students from registering. Updated: 3:06pm 2/26/2020 EST

Meeting Info:

Days: Tuesday, Thursday

Times: 8:00am - 9:40am

Building: Eugene Lang 65 W11th

Room: 464

Date Range: 1/21/2020 - 5/7/2020