French Spaces of Detainment for Juveniles: Securitization and Humanization

Wednesday, 18 July 2018: 10:30
Oral Presentation
Léo FARCY-CALLON, Université Rennes 2/ESO, France
A branch of new closed institutions for juveniles was developed the last 20 years in the French legal landscape. Recent sociological studies show how new ideology of juvenile care is emerging (Lenzi, Milburn, 2015; Sallée, 2016). While there is a privatization and a diversification of closed institution, forms of confinement are changing. I observed those institutions with an ethnographic methodology in attempt to understand the deprivation of liberty toward juveniles.

Looking at spaces in those institutions is a good way to understand experiences of confinement, professional practices in the context of coercion, and ideologies underlying intervention. As Marion Seguin has shown, form and use of spaces need to be synthetized to understand how societies are founded, inhabited, and transformed (Seguin, 2010).

This presentation will reveal an ambivalence appearing on closed institutions’ policies, especially regarding spaces: between immobilization and mobility, openness and closedness, securitization and humanization (Darley, Lancelevée, Michalon, 2013). The first role of the deprivation of liberty is the isolation of the body from society; “It is subject to specific requirements of separation, security organization, control and visibility of detainees” (Chamond, 2014). At the same time, we observed a tendency towards the opening up and humanization of closed institutions, mostly by renovation of spaces, access to rights, individualization (Bouagga, 2015) and extramural intervention.

This new principle of confinement is enforced in attempt to reduce coercion and involve the juveniles in their detention and judicial path. To that end, individualization of detention, autonomy and responsibilization of juveniles are in the center of interventions. However, results of our survey show how this humanizing process does not reduce spatial coercion, and can even creates a new form of control operating extramurally, on the subjects’ minds, biographies, and paths (Comfort, 2003).