From Green Hell to grey heritage: ecologies of colour in the penal colony

Fuggle, S. ORCID: 0000-0001-9688-9593, 2021. From Green Hell to grey heritage: ecologies of colour in the penal colony. Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies. ISSN 1369-801X

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“Green Hell” was the nickname frequently given to France’s largest overseas penal colony in French Guiana. This essay explores the slow and difficult recognition of penal heritage in France and its former colonies via the notion of “grey” heritage adopted by Philippe Artières to identify heritage associated with imprisonment and detention. Drawing on the cross-disciplinary field of colour studies, we explore a series of different possible readings of “grey” in order to highlight different ways in which sites can be instrumentalised to both affirm and negate carceral continuities across history and transnationally. Focusing on locations in French Guiana and the Con Dao archipelago in Vietnam, the essay explores the materiality of these spaces, their presentation and their visitors, in order to suggest how “grey heritage” might be developed as a critical and reflexive approach to the carceral past.

Item Type: Journal article
Publication Title: Interventions: International Journal of Postcolonial Studies
Creators: Fuggle, S.
Publisher: Routledge
Date: 8 April 2021
ISSN: 1369-801X
Rights: © 2021 the author(s). Published by Informa UK Limited, trading as Taylor & Francis Group. This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Divisions: Schools > School of Arts and Humanities
Record created by: Jonathan Gallacher
Date Added: 15 Apr 2021 12:51
Last Modified: 31 May 2021 15:04

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