Définir l’enfermement à travers espaces et mouvements / Defining the carceral through space and movements

4e Conférence internationale de Géographie de l’enfermement, 2020


Nous relayons ici l’appel à communication de la 4e Conférence internationale de Géographie de l’enfermement qui devrait se tenir à Bruxelles les 14-15 décembre 2020. Cet appel, rédigé en anglais, est en ligne sur le site du Groupe de travail de Géographie de l’enfermement de la Société Royale de Géographie / Institut des Géographes Britanniques

The Carceral Geography Working Group (CGWG) of the RGS-IBG welcomes paper abstracts for the 4th International Conference for Carceral Geography.

The 4th International Conference for Carceral  Geography will take place in Brussels, Belgium. Hosted by the NICC (Nationaal Instituut voor Criminalistiek en Criminologie/Institut National de Criminalistique et de Criminologie), this will be the first Carceral Geography Conference to be held outside of the UK.

At the moment, we expect the conference to take place on 14th and 15th December 2020. However, given the current circumstances and the uncertainty surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, we are considering other possibilities should these prove necessary. We are monitoring the situation closely and will communicate possible changes in a timely manner.

Paper abstracts should be sent to Crimino@just.fgov.be by 30 June 2020 by using this form. Selection decisions will be made by 15 September 2020. 

Call for papers – Defining the carceral through spaces and movements

Over the last years, a research area has gained growing attention: carceral geography. On the one hand, as a radically interdisciplinary field, it has mainly grown from an interest by geographers in the prison and, more broadly, in carceral phenomena (such as retention camps, penal limitation of mobility outside of prison, deprivation of liberty in psychiatric institutions, and so on). On the other hand it has been further developed by criminology’s new look at a classical object, through a particular attention to questions of space. This current research field leads to the exploration of basic questions, such as the definition of prison (Milhaud 2009; Turner 2016) and its place in the public space (Milhaud and Morelle 2006), specificities of its space compared to other confinement areas (Altin and Minca 2017), the role of space and its arrangement in the experience of incarceration (Scheer 2016), management of transfers between prison facilities and mobility (Moran, Gill, and Conlon 2013; Turner and Peters 2017; Gill et al. 2016), the use of mobility to manage and legitimate prison (Mincke 2017; Gill 2013), etc.

One of the main challenges for carceral geography scholars is to characterise carceral spaces and the movements within. Although a lot of reflections have been published, it seems there remains a need for a dialogue around this specific question. Therefore, the next Carceral Geography Conference will be centred on combining spaces and movements, as key elements of the definition of the carceral.

The first purpose of this conference is to challenge researchers to reflect on their use of spaces and movements to define the carceral institutions or practices they are studying. Key questions might be: In which way are spaces and movements intertwined? Are they essential or might the carceral be defined beyond spatiality and mobility?

The second purpose is to explore the concrete characteristics of carceral spaces and mobilities. The spaces can be conceived in terms of openness, continuity, compartmentalisation, porosity, hierarchy, etc. The movements could be legal or illegal, constant or rare, promoted or hampered, and might be related to persons, information, ideas, diseases, goods and services, etc. Furthermore, the importance of movement in power relationships, in the perceptions of spaces and, among others, in the legitimation discourses of carceral settings should be discussed. Perspectives that include both spatiality and mobility are strongly recommended.

The third purpose of this conference is to embed these visions of carceral spaces and mobilities into typologies: is there something like a typical carceral space or (im)mobility, are carceral spaces and mobilities multiple and protean, or could the carceral cope with any type of space and mobility?

The fourth purpose underlies the others and encourages the researchers to explore epistemologies or methodologies supporting the definition and understanding of carceral spaces and mobilities. In order to motivate carceral geography in defining its objects and its relationships to them, theoretical presentations are highly welcomed.

The conference is meant to be a meeting point for various disciplines and a place where interdisciplinary approaches can be presented. Geography, criminology, sociology, anthropology, political science, history, and many other disciplines are welcomed. Empirical and theoretical contributions as well as conceptual refinements of this young research domain are encouraged. Priority will be given to contributions combining the different angles of this call.

For any queries about the application process, the upcoming conference, or any other aspect of this Call, please email the Organising Committee via Crimino@just.fgov.be.

We look forward to welcoming you to the 4th Carceral Geography Conference!

Carceral Geography Conference 2016

geog-building-sunshine1There is just one week left before the Call for Papers for this conference closes (at 8am UK time on Friday 7th October)!

Carceral Geography Conference 2016 at the University of Birmingham : Confinement, Crossings and Conditions

The School of Geography, Earth and Environmental Sciences at the University of Birmingham will host the first dedicated conference for Carceral Geography, on Tuesday 13th December 2016.

Call for Papers

Abstracts are invited for papers which address the themes of this conference: Confinement, Crossings and Conditions. These themes pertain to the nature and experience of carceral confinement, broadly interpreted; the notion of crossing of an assumed or contested boundary both between spaces of confinement and ‘other’ spaces,  and to the ways in which carceral experiences persist after periods of custody have ended – both for those confined, and for affected others. During ESRC research projects to which the conference is linked, (focused on the experience of carceral spaces) issues of absence, intimacy, choreography and the microscale emerged as significant, and prospective speakers are invited to engage with (but are by no means limited to) these notions. Papers which discuss methodological or theoretical approaches for carceral geography, and those exploring the ‘place’ of carceral geography in relation to human geography / criminology / carceral studies more generally are also welcome.

Abstracts from postgraduate and early career researchers are particularly welcome.

As well as providing a forum for dissemination and discussion of new and recent research in carceral geography, this event is intended provide a ‘springboard’ for the development of an organisational structure for this subdiscipline: there will formal and informal opportunities to discuss and plan actions and activities around this topic.

A limited number of travel and accommodation bursaries will be available for paper presenters.

Please use this URL to:

  •     Register to attend as a speaker, and submit your abstract
  •     Register to attend as a non-presenting delegate

If you are submitting an abstract, please note that the closing date to do so is 8am (UK time) on Friday 7th October. Selection decisions will be communicated by Friday 14th October.

Olivier Milhaud lauréat du Prix Gabriel Tarde, prix français de criminologie

La thèse d’Olivier Milhaud, Séparer et punir, les prisons françaises mises à distance et punition par l’espace a été récompensée du Prix Gabriel Tarde, dont la gestion est assurée par l’Association française de criminologie , dans le but de “promouvoir la recherche et les enseignements de toutes les disciplines qui participent au développement de la criminologie”.

Le jury de la session 2010-2011 s’était réuni début octobre sous la présidence de Christian Nils Robert, professeur honoraire de droit pénal et de criminologie, avocat, expert au Comité européen de prévention de la torture.

Né en 1978, Olivier Milhaud est maître de conférences en géographie à l’Université Paris 4 Sorbonne. Normalien, agrégé et docteur en géographie, il travaille sur l’espace carcéral. Soutenue en 2009 à l’Université de Bordeaux 3, sa thèse avait déjà reçu le Prix de thèse de l’Université de Bordeaux en 2010.

Power, Control and Money in Prison : the case of the Yaounde Central Prison

Abstract of the  paper presented by Marie Morelle at the Association of American Geographers Annual meeting as part of the Paper Session: Mobilities, Borders, and Confinement III: Place and Fixity (scheduled on Friday, 4/15/2011 at 14:40 PM. Washington State Convention Center Level 6, Seattle, Washington) :

Power, Control and Money in Prison : the case of the Yaounde Central Prison

This paper aims at analysing the interactions between inmates and the penitentiary authorities, in a carceral situation, from a spatial point of view. It focuses especially on internal mobilities, in the Central Prison of Yaounde. It draws from fielwork undertaken in the Yaounde Central Prison, in April and July 2010. The fieldwork was based on enquiries and on observations.

The Yaounde Central Prison (known as « Kondengui ») is overcrowded : it was built in 1968 for 800 to 1 000 inmates, according to the differents sources. It now hosts between 3 000 and 4 000 of them. This overcrowding acts upon the appropriation of space and the power structures at the level of the prison, in a context where the prisoners are unevenly divided into the 13 districts of Kondengui. How does the right to circulate inside the prison and even to have access to a bed, to a cell, to a district is guaranted inside the prison ?

The formal prison organization cannot be opposed in a binary way to the inmates’ resistances to spatial and temporal constraints. Some prisoners are neither subjected to nor entirely resisting the carceral order (of the guards as well as of the penitentiary authorities). They negociate a place to live. These kinds of negociations produce a secure (money, access to different places, etc.).

This paper therefore proposes a microgeography of the carceral space to understand the power relationships in a context of confinement.