Sanctuary, Sovereignty, Sacrifice

Canadian Sanctuary Incidents, Power, and Law

Table des matières



1 Introduction

2 Features of Canadian Sanctuary Incidents, 1983-2003

3 Advanced-Liberal Refugee Determination and Resettlement

4 Sanctuary as Sovereign Power

5 Sanctuary as Pastoral Power

6 Sanctuary and Law

7 Conclusion



Notes; Bibliography; Index

Facing immediate deportation, a lone Guatemalan migrant entered sanctuary in a Montreal church in December 1983. Thus began the practice of sanctuary in Canada.

La description

Drawing on theories of governmentality, Lippert traces the emergence of sanctuary practice to a shift in responsibility for refugees and immigrants from the state to churches and communities. Here sanctuary practices and spaces are shaped by a form of pastoral power that targets needs and operates through sacrifice, and by a sovereign power that is exceptional, territorial, and spectacular. Correspondingly, law plays a complex role in sanctuary, appearing variously as a form of oppression, a game, and a source of majestic authority that overshadows the state. A thorough and original account of contemporary sanctuary practice, this book tackles theoretical and methodological questions in governmentality and socio-legal studies.


Randy Lippert’s Sanctuary, Sovereignty and Sacrifice is an ambitious work that manages to successfully interrogate an empirical phenomena (sanctuary incidents) via a set of highly sophisticated theoretical concepts. Lippert’s sophisticated theoretical engagement and empirical investigation are intellectually fruitful and politically timely

- Amy Swiffen

The work is highly original, contributing to theory regarding governmentality, as well as to knowledge regarding Canadian sanctuary practices . .. Altogether, a fascinating and complex account.

- Susan Bibler Coutin, author of The Culture of Protest: Religious Activism and the U.S. Sanctuary Movement