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NCJ Number
Bryan J. Grapes
Date Published
176 pages
The essays in this book contain positive and negative views of several theories of prison operation.
Proponents of prisons as a solution to crime claim that imprisonment is an effective deterrent to crime; incarceration reduces crime; and increased incarceration of criminals benefits society. Other essays claim that the prison system does not work and incarceration exacerbates criminal behavior. They suggest that preventive programs such as community policing and drug treatment would be far more successful in fighting crime. Theories regarding the treatment of inmates range from the advisability of strict punishment to the desirability of efforts at rehabilitation. The book also contains essays on prison privatization that discuss whether it is cost effective and efficient or abusive and inefficient and fosters prison corruption. Finally, advocates of the use of prison labor claim that it is essential to rehabilitation, teaches prison laborers marketable skills and chain gangs are an effective deterrent to crime. Opponents of the practice claim that it threatens the jobs of law-abiding citizens, amounts to slave labor and may pose a threat to public safety. Bibliography