International migration has been described as one of the defining issues of the twenty-first century. While a lot is known about the complex nature of migratory flows, surprisingly little attention has been given to one of the most prominent responses by governments to human mobility: the practice of immigration detention.
Intimate Economies of Immigration Detention provides a timely intervention, offering much needed scrutiny of the ideologies, policies and practices that enable the troubling, unparalleled and seemingly unbridled growth of immigration detention around the world. An international collection of scholars provide crucial new insights into immigration detention recounting at close range how detention’s effects ricochet from personal and everyday experiences to broader political-economic, social and cultural spheres. Contributors draw on original research in the US, Australia, Europe, and beyond to scrutinise the increasingly tangled relations associated with detention operation and migration management. With new theoretical and empirical perspectives on detention, the chapters collectively present a toolbox for better understanding the forces behind and broader implications of the seemingly uncontested rise of immigration detention.
This book is of great interest to those who study political economy, economic geography and immigration policy, as well as policy makers interested in immigration.
‘This impressive and wide-ranging collection brings together leading scholars to expose the intimate economies, experiences, and processes that shape immigration detention. From the pocket money provided for asylum seekers in Danish detention centres, to the growing capacity of the detention estate across Europe, this collection traces a series of politically astute linkages between intimate experiences and global processes. By placing detention at the heart of contemporary migration, Conlon and Hiemstra have produced a volume that makes a critical intervention into debates over mobility, governance, and the politics of citizenship. In foregrounding the entangled relationships of detention, this volume contributes both a theoretically innovative focus on the intimate, whilst also calling attention to the political and ethical urgency of challenging detention across the world. Anyone interested in understanding the immigration detention industry, and in actively contesting it, will find inventive, insightful, and powerful resources in this book.’ — Jonathan Darling, Senior Lecturer in Human Geography, University of Manchester, UK
‘Deirdre Conlon and Nancy Hiemstra have pulled together an astonishing collection of essays which focus on the intimate economies of immigration detention and shed light on the lived experiences of being detained in several countries. The wide geographic range presented in this collection is impressive and helps give the reader a sense of the extent to which immigration detention has become a global phenomenon. The collection is theoretically and empirically innovative, providing us both with new ways of thinking about the increasingly-common practice of detention as well as new insights into the significant physical and emotional toll detention takes on migrants’ lives. The editors creatively build on concepts of accumulation and dispossession to advance our conceptual understanding of the intimate economies of immigration detention. This important set of essays brings that which is often hidden - immigration detention - to light and does so in provocative ways. This book will be a critical addition to classes on immigration, political economy, and state repression. Moreover, anyone interested in migrant rights anywhere in the world should read this volume.’ — Tanya Golash-Boza, Professor of Sociology, University of California, Merced, US
‘Intimate Economies of Immigrant Detention powerfullybrings to life the best of feminist theory by showing how and why the seemingly banal, the familiar, and the everyday matter—and matter in profound ways. From the price of toothpaste immigrant detainees are compelled to pay to humanitarian efforts to "improve" what are inherently dehumanizing detention practices, this invaluable volume illuminates the messy connections between political economic processes, state practices, and experiences imprisoned migrants endure. In doing so, the book demonstrates the simultaneous hardening of various boundaries and their increasing blurriness given the myriad connections that transcend and produce them, and that they reflect.’ — Joseph Nevins, Associate Professor of Geography, Vassar College, USA.
Foreword: On the depth and importance of intimate economies
Chapter 1: Introduction: Intimate economies of immigration detention
Deirdre Conlon and Nancy Hiemstra
PART 1: ENGAGING THE INTIMATE
Chapter 2: Detained beyond the sovereign: conceptualising non-state actor involvement in immigration detention
Chapter 3: Discretion, contracting, and commodification: privatisation of US immigration detention as a technology of government
Chapter 4: In the market of morality: international human rights standards and the immigration detention "improvement" complex
Chapter 5: Bearing witness and the intimate economies of immigration detention centres in Australia
Chapter 6: Managing capacity, shifting burdens: social reproduction and the intimate economies of immigrant family detention
Jill Williams and Vanessa Massaro
Chapter 7: On exterior and interior detention regimes: governing, bordering, and economy in transit migration across Mexico
PART 2: EXPOSING INTIMATE ECONOMIES
Chapter 8: Captive consumers and coerced labourers: intimate economies and the expanding US detention regime
Nancy Hiemstra and Deirdre Conlon
Chapter 9: Intimate economies of ambiguity and erasure: Darwin as Australia’s 2011-2012 ‘capital of detention’
Chapter 10: Pocket money: everyday precarities in the Danish asylum system
Chapter 11: Health and intimacies in immigration detention
Chapter 12:Intimate encounters with immigrant criminalisation in Arizona
Chapter 13: Intimate economies of state practice: materialities of detention in Finland
Anitta Kynsilehto and Eeva Puumala
Chapter 14: The pleasures of security? Visual practice and immigration detention
Afterword: Intimate economies, anomie and moral ambiguity