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The Colonial BastilleA History of Imprisonment in Vietnam, 1862-1940$
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Peter Zinoman

Print publication date: 2001

Print ISBN-13: 9780520224124

Published to California Scholarship Online: March 2012

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520224124.001.0001

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The Regime: Surveillance, Forced Labor, and Total Care

The Regime: Surveillance, Forced Labor, and Total Care

(p.72) 3 The Regime: Surveillance, Forced Labor, and Total Care
The Colonial Bastille

Peter Zinoman

University of California Press

This chapter examines the penal system regime in French Indochina. It explains that life inside the colonial prison was powerfully shaped by three factors including the conduct of the guards, the conditions of forced labor and the quality of food and health care, and these were virtually absent in Indochina. It suggests that this may be because of French colonial officials' distrust of and contempt for the indigenous prison staff and the callous indifference of the colonial state to the fate of native inmates.

Keywords:   penal system, French Indochina, colonial prison, forced labor, food, health care, prison staff, colonial state

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