Mediating crime, mediating culture

Nationality, femininity, corporeality and territory in the Schapelle Corby drugs case

Anthony Lambert*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

6 Citations (Scopus)


This article uses the arrest and conviction of Australian Schapelle Corby (for smuggling drugs into Indonesia) to articulate and explore the mediation of criminal 'events' across borders, bodies and technologies. As such, connections are drawn to the resurgence of nationalistic and neocolonial discourses within the contexts of globalization and the 'war on terror'. Working at the intersections of gender, race, border control and national identity, the Corby phenomenon is taken as a political drama of visuality and nationality that equates bodily security with regional integrity. Thus this article necessarily tracks the persistence of the body of the white female as a unit of currency in the aggressive adherence to historical tropes of nationalism. The mediation of Schapelle's 'criminal' body is shown to deploy a corporeal lexicon of terror through which the celebrity prisoner articulates tensions and changes in bilateral relations with Indonesia.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)237-255
Number of pages19
JournalCrime, Media, Culture
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2008


Cite this