Big Prisons, Big Dreams: Crime and the Failure of America's Penal System

Author:   Michael J. Lynch ,  Raymond J. Michalowski
Publisher:   Rutgers University Press
ISBN:  

9780813541860


Pages:   272
Publication Date:   31 August 2007
Format:   Paperback
Availability:   In Print   Availability explained
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Big Prisons, Big Dreams: Crime and the Failure of America's Penal System


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Overview

The American prison system has grown tenfold since the 1970s, but crime rates in the United States have not decreased. This doesn't surprise Michael J. Lynch, a critical criminologist, who argues that our oversized prison system is a product of our consumer culture, the public's inaccurate beliefs about controlling crime, and the government's criminalization of the poor. While deterrance and incapacitation theories suggest that imprisoning more criminals and punishing them leads to a reduction in crime, case studies, such as one focusing on the New York City jail system between 1993 and 2003, show that a reduction in crime is unrelated to the size of jail populations. Although we are locking away more people, Lynch explains that we are not targeting the worst offenders. Prison populations are comprised of the poor, and many are incarcerated for relatively minor robberies and violence. America's prison expansion focused on this group to the exclusion of corporate and white collar offenders who create hazardous workplace and environmental conditions that lead to deaths and injuries, and enormous economic crimes. If America truly wants to reduce crime, Lynch urges readers to rethink cultural values that equate bigger with better.

Full Product Details

Author:   Michael J. Lynch ,  Raymond J. Michalowski
Publisher:   Rutgers University Press
Imprint:   Rutgers University Press
Dimensions:   Width: 15.20cm , Height: 1.40cm , Length: 22.90cm
Weight:   0.379kg
ISBN:  

9780813541860


ISBN 10:   0813541867
Pages:   272
Publication Date:   31 August 2007
Audience:   College/higher education ,  Postgraduate, Research & Scholarly
Format:   Paperback
Publisher's Status:   Active
Availability:   In Print   Availability explained
This item will be ordered in for you from one of our suppliers. Upon receipt, we will promptly dispatch it out to you. For in store availability, please contact us.

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Michael J. Lynch is a professor in the department of criminology at the University of South Florida.

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