Theoretical developments in two fields not generally used by criminal law scholars——citizenship studies and legal geography——can be used to clarify concepts and elaborate fruitful research questions for those interested in the criminalization-citizenship nexus. Going well beyond the static notion of citizenship as either a legal status or a philosophical concept, current research in citizenship studies focuses on analyzing the interactive practices that constitute groups. This type of work is much more useful for sociolegal studies than the either legalistic or philosophical discussions of citizenship, as will be demonstrated in this article by analyzing how coercive legal mechanisms constitute different types of citizenship interactions. Secondly, along with other scholars interested in the governance of space, legal geographers have recently paid much attention to questions of scale. This is relevant to the study of criminalization because both the criminal law itself and criminal law scholarship tend to presuppose the scale of the nation-state. Research seeking to illuminate the networked policing of criminals, migrants, "strangers," and citizens could advance by asking questions about scale——and about the related but not coterminous legal mechanism of jurisdiction, which has been oddly neglected by legal geographers. Together, citizenship studies and interdisciplinary analyses of the scalar nature of governance can help to elaborate research questions shedding light on the temporally and spatially specific practices that connect citizenship and criminalization.
- ©© 2010 by the Regents of the University of California