A groundbreaking investigation into the roots of the American criminal justice system reveals how the past bleeds into the presentThe injustices of the contemporary American criminal justice system are well known: the world’s leader in rates of imprisonment; macho policing that is routinely indifferent to human rights in impoverished communities; astonishing cruelties that characterize day-to-day life in jails and prisons; taken-for-granted institutionalized racism displayed everywhere in full sight.What is less known and poorly understood is how the United States achieved this dubious status. Drawing upon original research, an extraordinary variety of sources, and an interdisciplinary perspective, Beyond These Walls calls for imaginative thinking about what prisons might have in common with ghettos and reservations, for recognizing the public functions of private security, for considering the relationship between foreign and domestic criminal justice policies, and for understanding how the public welfare system demeans and criminalizes poor women. Tony Platt explores the deep historical roots of the Trump administration’s law and order agenda, with specific attention to dynamics of race, class, and gender. In addition to explaining the persistent failures of past reform efforts, in particular how supposedly benevolent ideas led to an expansion rather than contraction of what Justice Sonia Sotomayor calls the carceral state, Beyond These Walls is a call to action, making a bold case for structural reforms that would guarantee justice for all.
- Law / Criminal Law / General
- Political Science / Law Enforcement
- Political Science / Public Policy / Social Policy
- Social Science / Criminology
- Social Science / Penology
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