Crime, Law and Social Change

, Volume 68, Issue 5, pp 529–546 | Cite as

Entangling carbon lock-in: India’s coal constituency

  • Emma LecavalierEmail author
  • Cameron Harrington


This article investigates how energy security in the Anthropocene is entangled in diffuse ways with materiality. In particular we examine the social-material entanglement of humans and coal in India and how coal manifests itself differently across social life in the country. Focusing on a single material allows us to study how the Anthropocene creates, and is created by, particular appropriations of the material world. It offers a corrective to some Anthropocene literature that avoids discussing the complex, “everyday,” social impacts that fossil fuels have, particularly in the developing world. These intertwined impacts add to the complexity and difficulty in the process of decarbonizing societies, or in transitioning to a sustainable energy future.


Carbon lock-in India Materialism Coal crime Anthropocene 



Both authors would like to thank colleagues at the Centre International de Criminologie Comparée at Université de Montréal for their helpful comments and insights on an earlier version of this work. We would also like to thank Nchimunya Hamukoma for her research assistance.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Political ScienceUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada
  2. 2.Global Risk Governance Programme, Institute for Safety Governance and CriminologyUniversity of Cape TownCape TownSouth Africa

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