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The Oxford History of the Prison: The Practice of Punishment in Western Society

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3.75  ·  Rating Details ·  51 Ratings  ·  4 Reviews
In The Oxford History of the Prison, a team of distinguished scholars offers a vivid account of the rise and development of this critical institution. The authors trace the persistent tension between the desire to punish and the hope for rehabilitation, recounting the institution's evolution from the rowdy and squalid English jails of the 1700s, in which prisoners and visi ...more
Hardcover, 512 pages
Published November 30th 1995 by Oxford University Press, USA
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Jonathan-David Jackson
The most thorough discussion of prisons that I've ever read; very interesting. The book is too detailed for me to really do it justice in a review (and also because I've forgotten it all since I read it), so I'll just say that if you have any interest in the history of incarceration at all, you'll find this enlightening.
Kate
One of my works-in-progress involves a reform school for girls. I only looked at the chapter about reform schools and their relation to various prison reform movements. Overall I found that the one chapter in this book was equivalent to much of the book Daughters of the State: A Social Portrait of the First Reform School for Girls in North America, 1856-1905, even though this chapter covered reform schools for both boys and girls. The chapter discusses how various school and prison reforms affec ...more
Janice Liedl
This is an erudite collection of essays that idiosyncratically takes on the history of prisons from antiquity to the modern period. The history is not terribly deep in terms of chronology - one overview of the distant past, another broad survey of the early modern period (heavy emphasis on the chapter author's own expertise in Dutch prisons) and then a leap forward into the modern era where the collection spreads it wings. If your focus is on the 18th century to the present? This will appeal. I ...more
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