This paper discusses the sentencing and punishment of Indigenous peoples in settler colonial states, most notably Australia. The paper begins by critically analysing the way non-Indigenous courts have narrated the sentencing of Indigenous people, particularly through what on the surface would appear to be relatively beneficial considerations of disadvantage and the impact of colonialism. It then discusses what are generally referred to as Indigenous sentencing courts. Finally, it reflects on healing as an Indigenous response to social harm. Essentially existing outside of the formal court and correctional systems, healing approaches have grown over recent decades as both an alternative to the philosophical underpinnings of Western punishment, as well as providing practical alternatives to mainstream non-Indigenous correctional policies and practices.
Recommended CitationCunneen, Chris, Sentencing, Punishment and Indigenous People in Australia, Journal of Global Indigeneity, 3(1), 2018.