Publication Date

Spring 2015


Created for History & Sociology of Science (HSOC) Senior Honors Thesis, overseen by Dr. Ann Greene

Advisor: Dr. John Tresch

In this paper, I contend that screening's perceived instability is a direct consequence of its inability to achieve Legitimation, expound upon the various programs and strategies that have been--and are currently being--employed in attempts to establish the discipline's legitimacy, and demonstrate the need to divert from such continually futile approaches. Next, I contend that overcoming the stage of Legitimation and thus achieving the realm's stability is a practicable goal whose attainment depends on policymakers' reevaluation of the premises that have underlay previous--and continue to drive current--screening approaches. Finally, I present what I believe to be four concrete strategies that would enable policymakers to rebuild screening into a more respected discipline that can effectively transcend the obstacles that have historically hindered its ability to achieve legitimacy.

Key visual elements:

  • Graphic illustration
  • Timeline



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Terminal Insecurity: Passenger Screening's Historical Journey toward Landing Legitimacy