Towards a critical geography of corruption and power in late capitalism

Sapana Doshi, Malini Ranganathan

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


Corruption politics have received little attention in human geography. We offer a critical geography of corruption as an alternative to economistic framings that take corruption as an objective set of deviant practices mostly besetting states in the Global South. Instead, we theorize corruption as a historically shifting, subjective discourse about the abuse of entrusted power. Geographic and cognate disciplinary approaches reveal how corruption narratives become politicized and yoked to symbolic, material, and territorial regimes of power. We suggest that recent theories of urban informality provide a revealing lens into the ethico-politics and territorial struggles of contemporary capitalism across the North and South.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)436-457
Number of pages22
JournalProgress in Human Geography
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 1 2019


  • accumulation by dispossession
  • corruption discourse
  • land grabs
  • populism
  • territory
  • urban informality

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Geography, Planning and Development


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