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“I felt a kind of pleasure in seeing them treat us brutally.” The Emergence of the Political Prisoner, 1865–1910

  • Padraic Kenney (a1)
Abstract
Abstract

The political prisoner is a figure taken for granted in historical discourse, with the term being used broadly to describe any individual held in captivity for oppositional activities. This article argues for understanding the political prisoner, for whom prison becomes a vehicle of politics, as the product of modern states and political movements. The earlier practices of the “imprisoned political,” for whom prison was primarily an obstacle to politics, gave way to prisoners who used the category creatively against the regimes that imprisoned them. Using the cases of Polish socialists in the Russian Empire, Fenians in Ireland, suffragettes in Britain, and satyagrahi in British South Africa, this article explains how both regimes and their prisoners developed common practices and discourses around political incarceration in the years 1865–1910.

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      “I felt a kind of pleasure in seeing them treat us brutally.” The Emergence of the Political Prisoner, 1865–1910
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Corresponding author
pjkenney@indiana.edu
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This list contains references from the content that can be linked to their source. For a full set of references and notes please see the PDF or HTML where available.

Mary Gibson , “Global Perspectives on the Birth of the Prison,” American Historical Review 116, 4 (Oct. 2011): 1040–63

Sir Leon Radzinowicz and Roger Hood , “The Status of Political Prisoner in England: The Struggle for Recognition,” Virginia Law Review 65, 8 (Dec. 1979): 1421–81

Michael Ignatieff , A Just Measure of Pain: The Penitentiary in the Industrial Revolution, 1750–1850 (New York: Pantheon, 1978), 159

Norval Morris and David J. Rothman , eds., The Oxford History of the Prison (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1995)

Clare Anderson , Convicts in the Indian Ocean: Transportation from South Asia to Mauritius, 1815–53 (New York: St. Martin's Press, 2000)

Peter Zinoman , The Colonial Bastille: A History of Imprisonment in Vietnam, 1862–1940 (Berkeley: University of California Press, 2001)

Florence Bernault , ed., A History of Prison and Confinement in Africa, Janet Roitman , trans. (Portsmouth, N.H.: Heinemann, 2003)

Zeev Sternhell , “Paul Déroulède and the Origins of Modern French Nationalism,” Journal of Contemporary History 6, 4 (1971): 4670, here 67

Tim Causer , “‘On British Felony the Sun Never Sets’: Narratives of Political Prisoners in New South Wales and Van Diemen's Land, 1838–53,” Cultural and Social History 5, 4 (2008): 423–35

Sophia A. van Wingerden , The Women's Suffrage Movement in Britain, 1866–1928 (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1999), 87

June Purvis , “The Prison Experiences of the Suffragettes in Edwardian Britain,” Women's History Review 4, 1 (1995): 103–33

Elizabeth Crawford , “Police, Prisons and Prisoners: The View from the Home Office,” Women's History Review 14, 3–4 (2005): 487505, here 500–1

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Comparative Studies in Society and History
  • ISSN: 0010-4175
  • EISSN: 1475-2999
  • URL: /core/journals/comparative-studies-in-society-and-history
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