Prison Breaks pp 311-335 | Cite as

Chapter 12 “Everybody Likes Escape Stories”: Exploring Representations of Prison Escape in Canadian Penal History Museums

  • Matthew Ferguson
  • Devon Madill
  • Justin Piché
  • Kevin Walby
Part of the Palgrave Studies in Prisons and Penology book series (PSIPP)


Decommissioned carceral sites that have been transformed into penal history museums serve as popular destinations for visitors. There are hundreds of other penal history museums across Africa, the Americas, Asia, Europe and Oceania (Wilson et al. 2017) that similarly claim to offer a rare chance for “those on the ‘outside’ to access life ‘inside’” (Turner and Peters 2015, p. 72). Ross (2012) uncovered 95 penal history museums in operation worldwide. More recent investigations, such as a study by Walby and Piché (2015a), which identified at least 45 museums in the Canadian context alone memorializing the history of imprisonment in settings that include former penitentiaries, prisons, jails and lock-ups, have pushed this global count to well over one hundred. This chapter explores representations of escape in these sites of punishment memorialization.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Matthew Ferguson
    • 1
  • Devon Madill
    • 1
  • Justin Piché
    • 1
  • Kevin Walby
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of CriminologyUniversity of OttawaOttawaCanada
  2. 2.Department of Criminal JusticeUniversity of WinnipegWinnipegCanada

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