The Detention Estate

My forthcoming monograph, The Detention Estate, is the culmination of 10 years of people-centered, global study of detention that is focussed on Canada but draws on my research in the UK, the US, and Australia.

My book puts forward a conceptualization of detention that sees the State’s violences against immigrants - and society - as stretching beyond the prison walls. Accordingly, I am figuring detention not as a prison cell but as a concept that multiple axes of oppression create, cement, and reinforce in Canada and around the world. These intersectional axes are the material or physical incarceration of asylum seekers and other migrants; what I model as the legal and policy-driven transformation of people into risky ‘detainable subjects who society condones as subject to extreme measures of social control; and the moral and political authority that is transferred from the State via its epistemological and ontological support and operationalizing of migrant incarceration.


The Detention Estate also shows a way forward to challenge the normalization of detention through coalition building with affected communities.