Kevin Walby is Associate Professor in the Department of Criminal Justice at the University of Winnipeg. He is Co-managing Editor of the Journal of Prisoners on Prisons.
All Sessions by Kevin Walby
Friday April 12th
B2-5b: The Ethics of Prison Tours for Teaching and Research in Canadian Social Science
11:00 - 11:45
It is quite common for professors and instructors in Canada to use tours of prisons or jails for research purposes. Perhaps even more common is use of tours of prisons or jails for pedagogical purposes. Indeed, many professors and instructors teaching in criminology or sociology departments across Canada use some sort of prison or jail tour with a class of theirs on an annual basis. However, little attention has been paid to the ethical issues raised in using prison and jail tours for research or teaching purposes in Canada. How often do professors and instructors obtain ethics approval for such activities? To what extent do they or their students contemplate ethical problems and dilemmas with such tourism? In what ways do these tours advance further marginalization and violence against criminalized, imprisoned persons? In this presentation we contend that there are multiple ethical issues with research and pedagogical tours of prisons and jails that need to be thought about and addressed. We suggest a need for such practices to be scrutinized and interrogated.
Keywords: Prisoners, prisons, jails, power, standpoint