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March 31 Sociology of the Criminal Justice System Notes

by: Massiel Rivera

March 31 Sociology of the Criminal Justice System Notes SOCI 161

Marketplace > Santa Clara University > Sociology > SOCI 161 > March 31 Sociology of the Criminal Justice System Notes
Massiel Rivera

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About this Document

Week 1 Notes (not Introduction notes)
Sociology of the Criminal Justice System
Professor Lopez Aguado
Class Notes
sociology, Criminal Justice
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This 3 page Class Notes was uploaded by Massiel Rivera on Thursday March 31, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to SOCI 161 at Santa Clara University taught by Professor Lopez Aguado in Winter 2016. Since its upload, it has received 9 views. For similar materials see Sociology of the Criminal Justice System in Sociology at Santa Clara University.


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Date Created: 03/31/16
Sociology of the Criminal Justice System , 2016 Foucalt and Delinquency Discipline and Punishment ­ Focuses book on exploring the development of punishment ­ Prison as part of larger social system charged with creating disciplined social subjects ­ Explains evolution/development of the prison, which is considered a “failed/failing”  system Schools and Hospitals Socialize Disciplined Subjects ­ Schools teach us specific values and ideologies ­ Hospitals teach us to accept the authority of scientific knowledge because our well­being  depends on it ­ Implicit knowledge/teaching of norms o Learn specific stories, in order to recognize authorities in schools o Learn to respect scientific knowledge as a type of authority  Doctors, researchers, as people whose authority is to be respected ­ Prison is a similar institution, teaches us to be civilized members of society, shapes how  we learn to discipline ourselves Panopticon ­ Carceral model that makes constant surveillance possible ­ Trains individuals to monitor and discipline themselves o Always a possibility of being monitored o Model reproduced outside of prison itself (campus, NSA, airport/transportation  systems, shopping malls) ­ Influences how we learn to behave in other social institutions The Prison and Criminality ­ Foucalt investigates apparent failure of prison evident in high recidivism ­ Argues prison doesn’t fail, because its main role is to create crime and criminality, not to  combat it o “not intended to eliminate offenses, but to distinguish them (as criminal or not)” ­ How? Why? o Labeling/defining people and behaviours as deviant o Individuals are blamed rather than the social structures that make these failures  possible if not inevitable o Legitimizes/reestablishes authoritative control over populations due to “public  safety” concerns o Perpetuates systematic disadvantages over certain populations, ie poor or POC o Financial incentive/investment Creating Delinquency ­ Prison creates delinquency (a highly viable and controllable type of deviance) o Experience of incarceration alienates individual from system Sociology of the Criminal Justice System , 2016 o Prisons socialize delinquency through prisoner cultures, organizations, peer  networks o Stigmas in society marginalize convicts and enforce recidivism o Throws families into poverty Hiding Punishment ­ Shift from using chain gangs to covered transports a major development for the modern  role of the prison and delinquency ­ By obscuring punishment, the state can control the public’s reaction to it ­ Essential step in isolating/identifying prisoner to a criminal class Why Create Delinquency? ­ Isolating and identifying a criminal class o Depoliticizes actions o Neutralizes threats to existing state regimes ­ Alienating delinquents from larger social classes prevents the poor from seeing cries as  sociopolitical resistance ­ Limits deviance to individual acts and keeps from escalating to social uprisings ­ Makes delinquents exploitable agents ­ Strips political meaning from any acts once criminalized, prevents people from  identifying with illegality ­ Crime is framed as an individual failing ­ Crime becomes reinterpreted ­ State creates delinquency by labeling particular acts and people as delinquent  (punishable) ­ Creates a vilified criminal class o Limits illegality to a small, controllable group o Contains treat delinquents pose to social order and ensures they do not spark  social rebellion o Delinquents used to control and monitor the poor o Frames state obedience as a moral obligation ­ Prison isolates law breakers, creates a barrier between public and criminal class o Prevents mass sympathy o Frames crime as an individual fault o Becomes a moral incentive for obeying the state ­criminal status is constructed by the state with a political goal in mind Erasure & “Counting” of Prisoners ­ Removes prisoners from hometowns and moves them to rural sites ­ Instead of counting toward their own communities, they are counted towards towns with  very different politics o Prisoners of the Census  State/federal funding based on population counts Sociology of the Criminal Justice System , 2016  Funds diverted towards other state counties/locales with different political  identities and ideologies  shapes political representation, which is also based on population counts Labeled as Delinquent ­ criminal labels actually make criminality o parolee, validated gang member, sex offender o state­issued label makes illegal acts criminal  cannot drink, be in particular neighborhoods, be around others similarly  labeled, possess “gang­related” clothing  must meet with Parole Officer, comply with constant monitoring, find  employment and acceptable housing  doing any of these will send parolees back to prison, or can be used to  charge unincarcerated youth with violating injunction orders ­ facilitates recidivism


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