Join is for a talk by Dr. Katherine Bruce-Lockhart, postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Historical Studies at UTM and the Jackman Humanities Institute.

When: Friday, January 25, 2 – 4 PM

Where: Room 2007D, Wilson Hall, New College, 40 Willcocks Street

Who: Everyone welcome! Refreshments will be served.


Event poster with portrait of Katherine Bruce-Lockhart and info repeated in the running text.

Talk Description 

From the forts used to hold slaves prior to crossing the Atlantic to the iconic moment of Nelson Mandela’s release from Robben Island, spaces of incarceration have been central to shaping imaginaries of the African continent. Yet, scholars know very little about African prisons beyond alarming statistics and images of abuse. While historians have begun to trace the expansion of the prison through colonial rule, its postcolonial afterlives have either ignored or used to support narratives of state failure. Prisons, however, were crucial spaces in which the stakes of decolonization and visions of postcolonial modernity were negotiated. Turning to the case of the Uganda Prisons Service, this talk explores the ways in which the prison was imagined between Uganda’s independence in 1962 and the current president’s assumption of power in 1986. In particular, it focuses on the perspectives of prison officers, illuminating how they used their professional status to form new subjectivities as public servants and providers during decades of significant political upheaval and violence.

Speaker Bio

Katherine Bruce-Lockhart is a SSHRC postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Historical Studies at UTM and the Jackman Humanities Institute. After doing her Bachelor’s degree in African Studies and History at U of T, she did an MSc in African Studies at the University of Oxford and a PhD in History at the University of Cambridge. She has several publications on women’s detention during the Mau Mau Rebellion in colonial Kenya and is currently completing a book manuscript on prisons in postcolonial Uganda, which is under advance contract with Ohio University Press. Katherine has taught African History courses at all three U of T campuses, and is currently teaching the course “Women in Sub-Saharan Africa” at the University of Toronto at Scarborough. 

Talk sponsored by the African Studies program at New College. Questions? Contact Marieme Lo, director of the African Studies program.

Date: January 25th, 2019
Start Time: 2:00pm