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Kenneth Madsen

Ken Madsen

Kenneth Madsen

Associate Professor


(740) 364-9643

182 LeFevre Hall
OSU Newark Campus

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Areas of Expertise

  • Political & Cultural Geography
  • Borders and Bordering
  • Geography of Film and Fiction


  • Ph.D., 2005 Geography, Arizona State University
  • M.A., 1999 Geography, Arizona State University
  • B.A., 1989 International Studies, Graceland College

The Ohio State University Newark Campus

Current CV: 



Interests: Political & Cultural Geography, Borders and Bordering, Geography of Film and Fiction, Conflict between Scales

Current Research:  
My research focuses on border barriers (walls/fences) and the impact of border law enforcement activities on Arizona border communities, especially the Tohono O’odham Nation (Indian reservation).  I am also interested in the legal mechanism behind border barrier construction, dynamics of indigenous-academic interactions, and insights from fiction on geographic processes.

Courses Taught:
GEOG 2750 - World Regional Geography
ENGL/GEOG 3597.03 - Environmental Citizenship
GEOG 3750 - Geography of North America
GEOG 3600 - Space, Power and Political Geography
ASC 1101 - Islam in Film

Select Publications:

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2022. Indigenous Sovereignty and Tohono O’odham Efforts to Manage Border Security. Latin American and Caribbean Ethnic Studies. (accepted, forthcoming)

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2022. Institutionalising the Exception: Homeland Security Section 102(c) Waivers and the Construction of Border Barriers. Geopolitics. (available ahead of print) [DOI open access]

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2023. Iconographic Landscapes of Borders and Immigration Controls. In The Routledge Companion to the American Landscape. (scheduled for print publication 27 March 2023)  Routledge.

Madsen,  Kenneth D. 2021. Terminus Unleashed: Divine Antecedents of Contemporary Borders. Journal of Borderlands Studies (available ahead of print). [DOI open access]

Bein, Rick, Et Al. 2020. Fifty Years of Fieldwork in Latin America (contribution to photo essay). Journal of Latin American Geography. 19 (1): 115-131. [DOI]

Weiser, Elizabeth; Low, John; Madsen, Kenneth. 2019. One site, many interpretations: managing heritage at an ancient American site, in Smeds, K. and Davis, A. (Eds.) Museum & Place.  Paris: ICOFOM (International Committee for Museology), pp. 138-161. [link]

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2018. Walls, waivers, and what we don’t know (part of the JLAG Perspectives Forum – The Border Wall and Beyond: Political and Environmental Perspectives). Journal of Latin American Geography. 17 (3): 262-264. [weblink] [as printed]

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2014. The alignment of local borders. Territory, Politics, Governance. 2 (1): 52-71. [DOI]

Madsen, Kenneth D. 2011. Barriers of the US-Mexico border as landscapes of domestic political compromise. cultural geographies. 18 (4): 547-556. [DOI]

Soto-Berelov, Mariela and Kenneth Madsen. 2011. Continuity and distinction in land cover across a rural stretch of the U.S.-Mexico border. Human Ecology. 39 (4): 509-526. [DOI]