Imprisoned Indigenous Women and the Shadow of Colonial Patriarchy
Australian & New Zealand Journal of Criminology, Forthcoming
24 Pages Posted: 21 Mar 2014 Last revised: 17 May 2014
Date Written: 2014
Imprisonment in Australia has been a growing industry and large numbers of vulnerable people find themselves in a state of serial incarceration. Women and Indigenous peoples in particular have experienced rapidly expanding imprisonment rates over recent decades. Our argument in this article is relatively straightforward: to understand contemporary penal culture and in particular its severity and excess in relation to Indigenous people and women, we need to draw upon an understanding of the dynamics of colonial patriarchy. We develop this understanding through a specific focus on Indigenous women. Although at a micro level, specific legislation and policy changes have had a negative impact on the imprisonment of vulnerable groups, it is within a broader context of the strategies and techniques of colonial patriarchy that we can understand why it is that particular social groups appear to become the targets of penal excess.
Keywords: Indigenous imprisonment, postcolonialism, women's imprisonment, penal excess, patriarchy
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