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Intersections of (infra)structural violence and cultural inclusion: the geopolitics of minority cemeteries and crematoria provision

Maddrell, A., McNally, D., Beebeejaun, Y., McClymont, K. and Mathijssen, B. (2021) Intersections of (infra)structural violence and cultural inclusion: the geopolitics of minority cemeteries and crematoria provision. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers, 46 (3). pp. 675-688. ISSN 0020-2754

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1111/tran.12437


Building on embodied and de-colonial approaches to geopolitics, this paper examines the relationship between forms of governance in municipal cemetery and crematorium provision and the needs of established minorities, arguing that inadequate infrastructure and services can constitute harm. Crucially, it is contended that forms of governance impact not only on the living, but also on perceptions of the wellbeing of the dead. Grounded in a study of four towns in England and Wales, the paper identifies firstly how intersectional identity fundamentally shapes people’s experiences of deathscape governance; secondly, the possibilities of infrastructural benefits of inclusive services; and thirdly, the harms done by non-inclusive forms of governance, implicit territoriality and inadequate infrastructure. This is evidenced in the negative impact of municipal cemetery organization and management on specific minority groups, such as inadequate burial space, high burial costs, hinderances to timely rituals, and protracted planning processes; as well as reduced access to services as a result of government austerity measures. The conclusion calls for a wider conceptualization of necropolitics, based on a critical-feminist-decolonial geopolitics of deathscapes in multicultural societies, and offers insights for the practical governance of inclusive cemeteries and crematoria.

Item Type:Article
Divisions:Science > School of Archaeology, Geography and Environmental Science > Department of Geography and Environmental Science
ID Code:96310
Uncontrolled Keywords:cemeteries, governance, minorities, geopolitics, necropolitics, bodies, austerity, religion, emotions, austerity
Publisher Statement:NB publisher Covid-impact statement - due to delay in journal processes due to Covid, this paper way would have been processed, accepted and published by Sept/Oct 2020: 'I would be confident that in the absence of the delays caused by COVID-19, the article would likely have been published in either September or October of 2020' (letter from journal with this statement copied to REF lead)


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