Breaking Women Gender, Race, and the New Politics of Imprisonment

ISBN-10: 0814761496

ISBN-13: 9780814761496

Edition: 2013

Authors: Jill A. McCorkel
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Description: Since the 1980s, when the War on Drugs kicked into high gear and prison populations soared, the increase in women’s rate of incarceration has steadily outpaced that of men. In Breaking Women, Jill A. McCorkel draws upon four years of on-the-ground research in a major US women’s prison to uncover why tougher drug policies have so greatly affected those incarcerated there, and how the very nature of punishment in women’s detention centers has been deeply altered as a result. Through compelling interviews with prisoners and state personnel, McCorkel reveals that popular so-called “habilitation” drug treatment programs force women to accept a view of themselves as inherently damaged, aberrant addicts in order to secure an earlier release. These programs work to enforce stereotypes of deviancy that ultimately humiliate and degrade the women. The prisoners are left feeling lost and alienated in the end, and many never truly address their addiction as the programs’ organizers may have hoped. A fascinating and yet sobering study, Breaking Women foregrounds the gendered and racialized assumptions behind tough-on-crime policies while offering a vivid account of how the contemporary penal system impacts individual lives. Jill A. McCorkel is Associate Professor of Sociology at Villanova University. 

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Book details

Copyright year: 2013
Publisher: New York University Press
Publication date: 8/5/2013
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 283
Size: 6.50" wide x 9.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.188
Language: English

Jill A. McCorkel is Associate Professor of Sociology at Villanova University.

Preface
Acknowledgments
Introduction: Searching for Red's Self
The End of Rehabilitation
Getting Tough on Women: How Punishment Changed
Taking Over: The Private Company in the Public Prison
From Good Girls to Real Criminals: Race Made Visible
The Practice of Habilitation
The Eyes Are Watching You: Finding the Real Self
Diseased Women: Crack Whores, Bad Mothers, and Welfare Queens
Contesting the Boundaries of Self
Rentin' Out Your Head: Navigating Claims about the Self
Unruly Selves: Forms of Prisoner Resistance
Conclusion: What If the Cure Is Worse Than the Disease?
Notes
Bibliography
Index
About the Author
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