Institutional Corrections

Institutional Corrections

In Chapter 11, we learned that institutional corrections have a long and controversial history. In what is known as the “Brutal Years,” punishment was strictly corporal, which essentially meant that punishment was harsh, physical, and public. Some examples include caning, whipping, and branding.

Institutional Corrections

With new developments, punishment became more “humane” after a push by William Penn. Rather than relying on a physical and public display of punishment, people instead began to be housed in singular cell units. One of the most extreme forms of isolation that a prisoner can get is solitary confinement. Informally, solitary confinement has been known as “the hole,” “SHU”, and “AdSeg.”

Based on the material from the lecture and reading, what is the purpose of solitary confinement? In other words, what do prisons hope to achieve by housing inmates in solitary confinement? What is one example that can send a person to solitary confinement? 

Next, please watch the two short video clips. The video clips offer insight into what solitary confinement entails. In one video, it is an investigative report into a New Mexico prison. The clip follows how one inmate served as the “model inmate” for solitary confinement. The second video is a documentary clip that goes inside a Maine State prison. There, the video shows a rehabilitative push to assist an inmate who is currently in solitary confinement. The videos have strong language.

Video 1: to an external site.

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I want you to apply some of this week’s key concepts to the video clip.

Based on the videos, do you see areas where there can be improvements in how solitary confinement is currently implemented? If yes, what are some examples? If not, what are some reasons why you wouldn’t change it?

If you were the warden in charge, would you still implement solitary confinement? Be sure to provide some justifications for your decision (in other words, do not simply say “yes” or “no”).

As a reminder, be sure to fully address all parts of the prompt using the reading and lecture material to support your answers. A one-sentence explanation or bullet points will not receive full credit. You must answer each of the prompt’s questions in detail.

For example, “According to Rennison and Dodge (2021), solitary confinement, otherwise known as “the hole” or “SHU”, refers to …

In the video, there is room for improvement in how solitary confinement is implemented. One suggestion is…”

Then, you provide your recommendations for improving solitary confinement conditions and why.

As always, please remain respectful and civil in your posts.

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