The settler policing of occupations: Devin Clancy, ‘Policing Indigenous Land Reclamations from Ipperwash to Caledonia’, The Annual Review of Interdisciplinary Justice Research, 6, 2017, pp. 65-85


Abstract: This paper analyzes the policing of settler colonialism in Canada through two specific land reclamations, Ipperwash (1995) and Caledonia (2006), and the Ipperwash Inquiry (2003-2007) that links them together. While these cases are often contrasted, Ipperwash as an instance of “escalated force” and Caledonia a progressive example of “measured response,” I argue that this dichotomy disguises the continuous and underlying function of the police. As an embodiment of Canada’s legal architecture, the police use violence to maintain social order and reproduce the geography of settlement. Processes of inquiry are limited by their inability to critique the constitutive violence of the law. By placing justice within Canada’s existing legal structures, the Ipperwash Inquiry naturalizes the spatial order that land reclamations intend to decolonize.

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