Appel à communications : Digital Panopticon, Penal History in a Digital Age

Submissions are invited for a conference to be held at the University of Tasmania, 22-24 June 2016 on the digital humanities and the history of prisons, the law, courts and convict transportation systems. The conference will address ways in which the increasing amounts of data generated by criminal justice systems available in digital form can be used to shed light on the past. An exciting aspect of the meeting is that it represents an opportunity to bring together researchers from four existing high profile collaborations:

Digital Panopticon (Universities of Liverpool, Sheffield, Sussex, Oxford, Tasmania) funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council, UK

Founders and Survivors (Universities of Melbourne, Tasmania, Guelph, Liverpool, Illinois) funded by the Australian Research Council

Carceral Archipelago (Leicester) funded by the European Community

The Prosecution Project (Griffith University) funded by the Australian Research Council.

Papers which address the theme of the conference from researchers not affiliated with these research teams are also encouraged, including research higher degree students and family historians. Submissions will be particularly welcome which explore the ways in which digital technologies can enhance research understandings in the following areas:

  • Life course offending including the onset of offending and factors contributing to desistence.
  • The intergenerational impacts of offending and punishment.
  • Digital dark tourism or ways in which the availability of electronic data has shaped the packaging criminal justice history and the ethical implications associated with increasing availability of data.
  • Opportunities for using prison, transportation and criminal justice data to explore the history of the family.
  • The relationship between colonisation, unfree labour and penal transportation.
  • The analysis of court reporting (including digitised newspapers) and prisoner and witness testimony.
  • Ways in which data visualisation techniques including GIS, 3D and digital mapping can be used to explore criminal justice data.
  • The analysis of biometric data including information about age, height, literacy, scars, injuries and tattoos.
  • The law, penal policy and changing social conditions.
  • The epistemology of court, criminal and other penal record keeping.

Email abstracts of no more than 250 words together with a 50 word biographical note to Jennifer.MacFarlane@utas.edu.au by 30 November 2015.