This book explores the intersection of race, gender, sex, and geography in Chicago. It examines the relationship between people and place, as well as the geographic lessons Black Chicagoans learned during the twentieth century and the role housing and architecture, politicians and police played in those lessons. Through an analysis of interracial sex districts, cramped apartments, project housing, street gangs, urban planning, and the HIV/AIDS epidemic in Chicago, the book reveals the workings of spatialized blackness in Chicago. It argues that policing, surveillance, and architectures of confinement were used to “spatialize blackness” in the city, with racialized and gendered consequences for Black people, especially on the South Side. The book also considers how parts of Chicago's South Side were confronted with daily forms of prison or carceral power that effectively prisonized the landscape. The effects of carceral power on Black masculinity are discussed, from its entrance into Black Chicago from the first leg of the Great Black Migration to the end of the twentieth century. This introduction provides an overview of the chapters that follow.
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