Carceral Feminism As Colonial Violence

Thursday, 19 July 2018: 14:00
Oral Presentation
Gillian BALFOUR, Trent University, Canada
Despite decades of liberal feminist gender-responsive reforms to the confinement and treatment of women prisoners, Indigenous women are the fastest growing prisoner population in Canada. Within the walls of these "feminist fortresses" (Hannah Moffat 1995) Indigenous women are more likely to be held in maximum security, solitary confinement, be subject use of force, and be denied parole. How do feminist criminologists account for the deepening of carceral violence against Indigenous women prisoners who are most likely to be victims of gender-based violence? Have women-centered prisons contributed to a carceral femicide of Indigenous women? This paper considers the works of scholar Elizabeth Bernstein (2012) on the carceral turn within feminist penal reform in the U.S., and Kelly Hannah Moffat’s (2010) call for an intersectional critique of gender-responsive correctional policies, and locates incarceration as a gendered and racialized form of endangerment for Indigenous women.