Tia Dafnos

Associate Professor



Tilley Hall 10


1 506 447 3393

Other titles

Director of Graduate Studies

Dr. Tia Dafnos joined the Sociology department in 2015 and is currently the Law in Society program coordinator. She received her doctorate in Sociology from York University where she also taught undergraduate courses in the Criminology and Sociology programs.

Her doctoral research examined changes in the policing of protests and activism in Canada since the mid-1990s, with a focus on the policing of Indigenous peoples’ protests after the 1995 Ipperwash reclamation.

Research interests

Tia’s research interests intersect in three core areas:

  1. Policing, security and pacification
  2. Racialization and colonialism
  3. Resistance, protest, and social movements.

Her work is grounded in an historical materialist orientation informed by critical race, feminist, anti/postcolonial and Indigenous perspectives. She is part of an anti-security collective, an international network of scholars and activists engaged in critical research on law, security, surveillance, policing and governance.

Tia is also interested in research methodologies in the study of ‘powerful’ institutions, particularly those empowered by secrecy that is legitimated by security discourse. An integral method in her research is the use of freedom of information/access to information requests.

Tia’s current research examines the significance of critical infrastructure within the emergency management paradigm of national security. Her focus is on the mechanisms through which state agencies are developing partnerships with private owner-operators of critical infrastructure to facilitate the exchange of information and intelligence.

Selected publications

Dafnos, Tia. 2020. Disrupting “Security”: Pacification, Accumulation and Colonialism. Gendering Globalization, Globalizing Gender: Post-colonial Perspectives, edited by Gül Çalişkan. Oxford University Press.

Boyle, Philip and Tia Dafnos. 2019. Infrastructures of Pacification: Vital Points, Critical Infrastructure, and Police Power in Canada. Canadian Journal of Law and Society. 34(1): 79-98. DOI: 10.1017/cls.2019.5

Dafnos, Tia. 2019. The Enduring Settler-Colonial Emergency: Indian Affairs and Contemporary Emergency Management in Canada. Settler Colonial Studies. 9(3): 379-395. DOI: 10.1080/2201473X.2018.1491157

Pasternak, Shiri and Tia Dafnos. 2018. How Does a Settler State Secure the Circuitry of Capital? Environment and Planning D: Society and Space. 36(4): 739-757. DOI: 10.1177/0263775817713209

Dafnos, Tia, Scott Thompson and Martin French. 2016. Surveillance and the Colonial Dream: Canada’s Surveillance of Indigenous Protest, in National Security, Surveillance, and Emergencies: Canadian and Australian Sovereignty Compared, edited by Randy K. Lippert, Kevin Walby, Ian Warren and Darren Palmer, 319-42. Basingstoke: Palgrave MacMillan.

Dafnos, Tia. 2014. Social Movements and Critical Resistance: Policing Colonial Capitalist Order, in Criminalization, Representation and Regulation, edited by D. Brock, A. Glasbeek and C. Murdocca, 385-418. Toronto: University of Toronto Press.

Dafnos, Tia. 2013. Pacification of Indigenous Struggles in Canada. Socialist Studies. 9(2):57-77.

Pasternak, Shiri, Sue Collis, and Tia Dafnos. 2013. Criminalization at Tyendinaga: Securing Canada’s Colonial Property Regime through Specific Land Claims, Canadian Journal of Law and Society 28(1): 65-81.

Dafnos, Tia. 2013. Studying “Up” as Radical Research, in Imaginative Inquiry: Innovative Approaches to Interdisciplinary Research, edited by Curtis Fogel, Elizabeth Quinlan and Andrea Quinlan, 115-130. Paolo Alto, CA: Academica Press.

Dafnos, Tia. 2012. Beyond the Blue Line: Researching the Policing of Aboriginal Activism Using Access to Information, in Brokering Access: Politics, Power and Freedom of Information Processes in Canada, edited by Mike Larsen and Kevin Walby, 209-33. Vancouver: UBC Press.

Bourke, Alan, Tia Dafnos and Markus Kip, eds. 2011. Lumpen-City: Discourses of Marginality | Marginalizing Discourses. Ottawa: Red Quill Books.

Supervision areas

  • Critical criminology
  • Socio-legal studies
  • Policing, security, surveillance, pacification
  • Colonialism, ‘race’, racism
  • Social movements and resistance

Please contact me to discuss possible supervision for undergraduate, MA, and PhD research projects.