- Paperback: 336 pages
- Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; 1 edition (August 1, 2002)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0226283844
- ISBN-13: 978-0226283845
- Product Dimensions: 6 x 0.9 x 9 inches
- Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #307,595 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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The Culture of Control: Crime and Social Order in Contemporary Society 1st Edition
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From Publishers Weekly
How, asks NYU Law professor Garland, did we in both the U.S. and Britain evolve into a society obsessed with crime and meting out increasingly harsh punishments? In an engrossing, complex study, Garland (Punishment and Welfare) pursues a somewhat familiar thesis that falling crime rates are accompanied paradoxically by expanded imprisonment, curtailment of civil liberties and stigmatization of a largely minority underclass by closely addressing subtle gradations of class and race relations. Garland initially charts how the "penal-welfare" system of rehabilitation, parole and social assistance rapidly fell from favor after nearly a century of widespread acceptance. The pursuit of seemingly radical ideologies (e.g., prisoner rights) by criminal-justice theorists during the 1960s and '70s alienated politicians and the public, paving the way for "law and order" revivals (epitomized by the Reagan administration in the U.S. and Thatcher's in England) emphasizing "punitive sanctions and expressive justice" (justice that conveys public sentiment). Garland traces the ascendance of "crime-in-the-streets" rhetoric evidenced in American gun culture, the victims' rights movement and the rising private security sector (e.g., gated communities). Meanwhile, lawmakers advocate more aggressive policing styles (as in New York's Mayor Giuliani's "quality of life" sweeps), and longer terms in harsher prisons. Garland also examines changing conceptions of the criminal "other" and public willingness to deem offenders a sub-citizenry undeserving of fundamental liberties. This ambitious book's formal prose may prove slow going for mainstream readers, as opposed to the more accessible Going Up the River (see Forecasts, Feb. 5), by Joseph Hallinan, which covers similar material. Still, this sweeping yet finely detailed examination of law enforcement's drift towards punishment and away from rehabilitation makes an important contribution.
Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Inside Flap
Garland explains how the new policies of crime and punishment, welfare and security—and the changing class, race, and gender relations that underpin them—are linked to the fundamental problems of governing contemporary societies, as states, corporations, and private citizens grapple with a volatile economy and a culture that combines expanded personal freedom with relaxed social controls. It is the risky, unfixed character of modern life that underlies our accelerating concern with control and crime control in particular. It is not just crime that has changed; society has changed as well, and this transformation has reshaped criminological thought, public policy, and the cultural meaning of crime and criminals. David Garland's The Culture of Control offers a brilliant guide to this process and its still-reverberating consequences.
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Top Customer Reviews
Garland reached an understanding of how this trend happened, was this process:
1. A shift from `penal welfare' to `retributive' model...
2. Prompted by social and tech. changes.
3. Enabled by a shift to political conservatism.
4. Resulting in a marginalization of subgroups.
5. Who were blamed for the problems in society, as was the liberal penal welfare model.
6. This shift resulted from a desire for security, order and control missing following #2.
7. And led to a combination of `market and moral discipline' with more controls on the poor and fewer on everyone else.
He finds that the current system of mass incarceration does the following:
-Creates systematic social, economic and political exclusion by race (social marginality)
-Develops and supports criminal underclass through criminogenic nature of incarceration and parole/probation rules
-Understates unemployment rate by removing `unemployable' from society.
-Alters norms and values of communities across generations.
-Creates a gulag system of economy, where prisoners are increasingly perform work for government and private business without pay.
That's a very brief summary, I could go into much greater detail, but I'll stop here. This book is now being cited by any serious inquiry into the phenomenon. However, despite its being very well-written, it's a thick read, so I would not recommend it for an undergrad text.