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Penal Humanitarianism? Sovereign Power in an Era of Mass Migration

24 Pages Posted: 28 Jul 2016  

Mary Bosworth

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law; University of Oxford - Border Criminologies

Date Written: 2016

Abstract

Since creating the ‘Returns and Reintegration Fund’ in 2008, the British government has financed a variety of initiatives around the world under the rubric of “managing migration” which have blurred the boundaries between migration control and punishment. This article documents and explores a series of overlapping case studies undertaken in Nigeria and Jamaica where the UK funded prison building programs, mandatory prisoner transfer agreements, prison training programs and resettlement assistance for deportees. These initiatives demonstrate in quite concrete ways a series of interconnections between criminal justice and migration control that are both novel and, in their postcolonial location, familiar. In their ties to international development and foreign policy they also illuminate how humanitarianism allows penal power to move beyond the nation state. In so doing, these overseas programs raise important questions about our understanding of punishment and its application.

Keywords: punishment, mass migration, sovereignty, Jamaica, Nigeria, penal humanitarianism, colonialism

Suggested Citation

Bosworth, Mary, Penal Humanitarianism? Sovereign Power in an Era of Mass Migration (2016). New Criminal Law Review (2017), Forthcoming; Criminal Justice, Borders and Citizenship Research Paper No. 2815301. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2815301

Mary Bosworth (Contact Author)

University of Oxford - Faculty of Law ( email )

University of Oxford - Border Criminologies ( email )

Manor Road Building
Manor Rd
Oxford, OX1 3UQ
United Kingdom

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