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Depth, weight, tightness: Revisiting the pains of imprisonment

Depth, weight, tightness: Revisiting the pains of imprisonment The ‘pains of imprisonment’ have been a longstanding concern within prison sociology. This article revisits the topic, suggesting that modern penal practices have created some new burdens and frustrations that differ from other pains in their causes, nature and effects. It notes that the pains of imprisonment can be divided up conceptually, and to some degree historically, into those deriving from the inherent features of incarceration, those resulting from deliberate abuses and derelictions of duty, and those that are consequences of systemic policies and institutional practices. Having described the latter in detail – focusing on the pains of indeterminacy, the pains of psychological assessment and the pains of self-government, the article explains the relevance of the concept of ‘tightness’, as well as ‘depth’ and ‘weight’, to the contemporary prison experience. http://www.deepdyve.com/assets/images/DeepDyve-Logo-lg.png Punishment & Society: The International Journal of Penology SAGE

Depth, weight, tightness: Revisiting the pains of imprisonment

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References (67)

Publisher
SAGE
Copyright
© The Author(s) 2011 Reprints and permissions: sagepub.co.uk/journalsPermissions.nav
ISSN
1462-4745
eISSN
1741-3095
DOI
10.1177/1462474511422172
Publisher site
See Article on Publisher Site

Abstract

The ‘pains of imprisonment’ have been a longstanding concern within prison sociology. This article revisits the topic, suggesting that modern penal practices have created some new burdens and frustrations that differ from other pains in their causes, nature and effects. It notes that the pains of imprisonment can be divided up conceptually, and to some degree historically, into those deriving from the inherent features of incarceration, those resulting from deliberate abuses and derelictions of duty, and those that are consequences of systemic policies and institutional practices. Having described the latter in detail – focusing on the pains of indeterminacy, the pains of psychological assessment and the pains of self-government, the article explains the relevance of the concept of ‘tightness’, as well as ‘depth’ and ‘weight’, to the contemporary prison experience.

Journal

Punishment & Society: The International Journal of PenologySAGE

Published: Dec 1, 2011

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