As defined within sociology, my specializations are science and technology studies, social theory, and critical legal studies. Drawing on scholarship in these fields, I have two research areas that examine the relationships between knowledge, power, and carcerality to discern: (1) how technology produces multiple meanings of sexual violence that are informed by concepts of race, gender, or class; and (2) how social networks shape criminological knowledge to intervene in sexual violence perpetration and manage the punishment of offenders.
My dissertation, Designing Justice: Sexual Violence, Technology, and Citizen-Activism, examines how citizen-activists challenge how the criminal justice system neglects assault by re-designing the objects used for self-defense, reporting, investigation, and punishment. Using archival, legal, and scientific sources, I uncover the social and legal consequences of four technologies: protective anti-rape devices, anonymous rape reporting apps, the rape kit backlog, and psychotropic drug treatments used on sex offenders.
My analysis reveals these technologies intersect with the social prisms of race and gender to facilitate conditions of equity and inequity. In doing so, I expose technology is a battleground for activists and the state to produce competing conceptions of social justice. In tracing the consequences of design, I further identify opportunities for practitioners to configure racially inclusive social and technological arrangements.
In the Field
Co-PI. “Trans and Gender Non-Conforming People Needs Assessment.” Trans Affairs Committee, City of Atlanta Mayor's Office.
Co-PI with PI Eric Wright, Georgia State University. “Estimating the Prevalence of Trafficking Among Homeless and Runaway Youth in Metro Atlanta.” National Institute of Justice, Grant 2016-9102, $499,9999.
Co-Investigator with PI Julie Ancis, Georgia Institute of Technology. "Disability and Technology." Department of Education.
Whose Rape Kit? Stabilizing the Vitullo Kit Through Positivist Criminology and Protocol Feminism
Renee Shelby (accepted). Whose Rape Kit? Stabilizing the Vitullo Kit Through Positivist Criminology and Protocol Feminism. Theoretical Criminology.
“I Incite This Meeting to Rebellion:” Sexual Violence, Law Enforcement, and the Radical Feminism of the 1909 Board Game Suffragetto
Renee Shelby (in press). “I Incite This Meeting to Rebellion:” Sexual Violence, Law Enforcement, and the Radical Feminism of the 1909 Board Game Suffragetto. ROMChip: Journal of Game Histories, 1/1.
How do Black Lives Matter in Teaching, Lab Practices, and Research?
Race and Racism in Contemporary Biomedicine Working Group (2017). How do Black Lives Matter in Teaching, Lab Practices, and Research? Catalyst, 3(1). ISSN 2380-3312.
Obscuring Sexual Crime:
Examining Media Representations of Sexual Violence in Megan's Law
Renee Shelby, and Anthony R. Hatch. (2014). Obscuring Sexual Crime: Examining Media Representations of Sexual Violence in Megan’s Law. Criminal Justice Studies, 27(4): 402-418.
Update Your Fairytale
Renee Shelby. (2012). Update your Fairytale: Media Analysis of Hook-up Narratives. Sociation Today, 10(2). ISSN 1542-6300.
The Pharmacy Prison: Auditing Prison Pharmaceutical Regimes
Anthony Hatch and Renee Shelby. (2019). The Pharmacy Prison: Auditing Prison Pharmaceutical Regimes. In Silent Cells: The Secret Drugging of Captive America. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press.
The Fading American Dream
Renee Shelby. (2016). “Rising Inequality and the Fading American Dream.” In Focus on Social Problems: A Contemporary Reader, edited by Mindy Stombler and Amanda Jungles. New York: Oxford University Press.
The Problem of Whiteness in Leisure and Sport Practices
Mary McDonald and Renee Shelby. (2017). “Feminism, Intersectionality, and the Problem of Whiteness in Leisure and Sport Practices.” In The Palgrave Handbook of Feminism and Sport, Leisure and Physical Education, edited by Louise Mansfield, Jayne Caldwell, Rebecca Watson, and Belinda Wheaton. Palgrave.
LGBT Institute Southern Survey Business and Employment Report
Renee Shelby, Ryan Roemerman, Ana LaBoy, Michael Jo Saint, and Eric Wright. LGBT Institute Southern Survey Business and Employment Report. The National Center for Civil and Human Rights. Atlanta, GA.
LGBT Institute Southern Survey General Report: Conditions and Life Experiences of LGBTQ Southerners
Eric Wright, Josh Simpkins, Michael Jo Saint, Ana LaBoy, Renee Shelby, Courtni Andrews, and Ryan Roemerman. LGBT Institute Southern Survey General Report: Conditions and Life Experiences of LGBTQ Southerners. The National Center for Civil and Human Rights. Atlanta, GA.
Let’s Talk About Sex Trafficking
Renee Shelby. “Let’s Talk About Sex Trafficking.” High School Curriculum for GLSN Leaders. Georgia Equality.
Papers in Progress
Techno-Physical-Feminism. (second round review) Feminist Media Studies.
Renee Shelby and Anthony Hatch. Gender, Crime, and Actuarial Assessment: Constructing the Classic Rape Script in Sex Offender Risk Assessment. (first round review) Critical Criminology.
Sexual Violence and the Forensic Gaze. Planned submission to Science, Technology, and Human Values.
#EndDemand: The Entanglements of Punishment, Protection, and Business in Reducing Sex Trafficking. Planned submission to Violence Against Women.
Technology and Post-Violence Securitization. Planned submission to Surveillance and Society.