Guyana’s Prisons: Colonial Histories of Post-Colonial Challenges
journal contributionposted on 20.11.2020, 11:13 by Clare Anderson, Mellissa Ifill, Estherine Adams, Kellie Moss
This article argues that history can play a role in addressing present-day concerns about the form and function of incarceration in the post-colonial nation of Guyana. It analyses some of the key features of imprisonment during the British colonial period (1814–1966), and connects them to the challenges faced by the prisons sector since Independence in 1966. The authors suggest that an appreciation of the history of jails in Guyana – including issues connected with prison capacity, overcrowding, training and education, and rehabilitation – can play a role in inspiring and supporting change in the Guyana Prison Service. In this way, the article suggests, historical research can impact on the administration of criminal justice in Guyana – and potentially in other contemporary post-colonial contexts, both within, and beyond, the Caribbean region.