Originally Posted by alkemical
The American Geography Of IncarcerationPosted by JacobSloan on May 30, 2012
We may peruse neighborhoods on Google Maps, read about suburban sprawl and new city developments, but millions of Americans exist in a different, ignored geography. Via the The Funambulist:
Prison Map is a project developed by Josh Begley, a graduate student at NYU. Letís recall that 2.5 millions people are living in prison in this country. Such a project illustrates therefore a sort of hidden urbanism in which 0.8% of the American population live for a given time.
They illustrate a geography of exclusion [and] often ironically appear similar to European palaces with well-ordered classical plans.
Well, the two are build to achieve similar things. Palaces and fortresses are often build in a modular way to separate not only those who work there from there who live there (just like a prison) but also those who live there. In most grand palaces in Europe there would be several generations of a family plus concubines, and of those they would all need to be in different places with minimal contact.
Another important similarity is that palaces and fortresses were build so they would be defensible from outside attacks, this is done by maximizing the amount of walls that overview any spot outside the facility - for prisons this same arrangement is used to avoid blind spots where people can hide from surveilance.
The ordered and symmetric grounds are just a result of architects being narrowminded, better structures could easily be made by doing away with symmetry.