Medieval Prison A Social History
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Description: The modern prison is commonly thought to be the fruit of an Enlightenment penology that stressed man's ability to reform his soul.The Medieval Prisonchallenges this view by tracing the institution's emergence to a much earlier period beginning in the late thirteenth century, and in doing so provides a unique view of medieval prison life. G. Geltner carefully reconstructs life inside the walls of prisons in medieval Venice, Florence, Bologna, and elsewhere in Europe. He argues that many enduring features of the modern prison--including administration, finance, and the classification of inmates--were already developed by the end of the fourteenth century, and that incarceration as a formal punishment was far more widespread in this period than is often realized. Geltner likewise shows that inmates in medieval prisons, unlike their modern counterparts, enjoyed frequent contact with society at large. The prison typically stood in the heart of the medieval city, and inmates were not locked away but, rather, subjected to a more coercive version of ordinary life. Geltner explores every facet of this remarkable prison experience--from the terror of an inmate's arrest to the moment of his release, escape, or death--and the ways it was viewed by contemporary observers. The Medieval Prisonrewrites penal history and reveals that medieval society did not have a "persecuting mentality" but in fact was more nuanced in defining and dealing with its marginal elements than is commonly recognized.
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All the information you need in one place! Each Study Brief is a summary of one specific subject; facts, figures, and explanations to help you learn faster.
List price: $39.95
Copyright year: 2008
Publisher: Princeton University Press
Publication date: 7/21/2008
Size: 6.25" wide x 9.25" long x 0.75" tall
G. Geltner is professor of medieval history at the University of Amsterdam.
|List of Illustrations|
|A Note on Dates and Money|
|Italian Prisons: Three Profiles|
|Aspects of Imprisonment|
|Administration and Bureaucracy|
|Finance and Economy|
|Punitive Imprisonment: Jurisprudence, Legislation, and Practice|
|The Terror of Arrest|
|Familiar Order: The Wards|
|Daily Life: Order and Dissidence|
|The World Outside|
|The Journey's End: Death, Escape, Release|
|The Prison as Place and Metaphor|
|Early Imaginaries: Martyrdom, Monasticism, and Purgation|
|Excursus: Jail-Breaking Saints|
|From Purgation to Purgatory: God's Great Prison|
|This World and the Next: The Urban Prison|
|Conclusion: "Marginalizing" Institutions, Instituting Marginality|
|A Prison Inventory from Bologna, 1305|
|Poems from the Prison|
|Le Stinche, a Reconstruction|
|Abbreviations and Archives|