How far can C20 developments in prison regimes be considered a turning point in the approaches to the punishment of criminals 1830-1965?
What pattern can we see 1830-1900? Reform Pentonville 1842: Triumph of Separate System to establish national frame work for prisons to bring reform of prisoner C20 Developments beginning with 1895 government committee which criticised harsh regime and marked re-focus on reform and welfare of prisoners 1865 Prisons Act: Prison should be for punishment – hard fare, hard labour, hard board Punishment 1830 1900
Why did the prison regime change change after 1895? • By the end of the C19 it as becoming clear that crime was not going to be solved by harsh punishment in prisons. A growing belief amongst the middle classes developed that a solution to the social problem of crime would involve large-scale intervention in the shape of welfare provision, housing improvements, medical care, and unemployment relief. • There was a growing concerns over the idea that ‘degeneration’ was afflicting British society and that society was declining into a mass of poor, urban decay. Thus Liberal reformers placed faith in the idea that social progress could be achieved by greater intervention of the state in bringing in reformist elements to punishment • Crime and fear of crime reduced so there was less pressure on prisons to be seen as so harsh • The belief that criminals inherited their criminal tendencies wad declining. Instead criminals were regarded as ordinary people who had the misfortune to be brought up in poverty or who had criminal friends and family who had led them astray. Thus better treatment and education could reform them