What an exciting time it is to be teaching a class on social movements! Over the past several months, the students in my Social Movements seminar have been watching and writing about Occupy Vancouver. One student was so inspired by the larger Occupy movement that she went to New York for a week. In a recent class presentation she showed us some photographs from her visit. These were not the images of Occupy Wall Street we had seen in the mainstream media. I wanted to draw your attention to one particular photograph that the student has kindly allowed me to share with you.
This picture shows a police tower with blacked out windows. The tower is permanently stationed at the Occupy site. As the student noted, not only can police observe what is going on from all directions, but the protesters can’t know if anyone is even in there. Is this panopticon a new form of protest policing?