V Cromwell English Penitentiary Penal Traditions Essay

English Prisons, Penal Tradition, and the Ease of Imprisonment, 1895-1922 Author(s): Victor Cromwell

Source: Diary of Uk Studies, Vol. 36, No . 3 (Jul., 1997), pp. 285-324 Published by: Cambridge University Press on behalf of The North American Conference on United kingdom Studies

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English Prisons, Penal Culture, and the

Abatementof Imprisonment, 1895-1922

Victor Bailey

The jail method is callous, regular and monotonous and produces great mental and physical tension. The deprival of freedom is extremely inappropriate and if it really is attended with treatment that deadens the spiritual nature and does not offer virtually any stimulus for the imagination, that coarsens and humiliates, it stands condemned. (Arthur Creech Jones, careful objector, Wandsworth Prison, 1916-19)1

The nineteenth century was the century in the penitentiary. Open public and physical punishments (from whipping towards the death penalty) were little by little replaced by less obvious, less del cuerpo sanction of imprisonment. By start of the Even victorian era, imprisonment was the main penalty in the system of contencioso punishments. For each and every 1, 1000 offenders sentenced at higher and summary courts in 1836 pertaining to serious (or indictable) offenses, 685 had been punished by simply imprisonment in local prisons. 2 By midcentury, furthermore, sentences of penal contrainte in convict VICTORBAILEYis gratefulto the Universityof Kansasfor a GeneralResearchFund awardwhich made it conceivable to completethis article. He would also like to thankJohn Beattie, JoannaInnes, RandallMcGowen, ElaineReynolds, NancyScott, andMartinWiener because of their valuablecommentson a basic draftof this article, the participantsof the Social HistorySociety conferenceat PutteridgeBury, Bedfordshire, January1994, who have braved snow and ice to give me a critical target audience, and the graduatestudentsin my device Britishcolloquiaon who the argumentswere first ?nduced. I Papersof ArthurCreechJones, RhodesHouse Library, Oxford, MS BritishEmpire S 332, box 1, file a couple of, fols. 194-97, n. g.: manuscriptaccountof his thoughtsin Wandsworth prison; quotedwith permissionfrom Purple CreechJones.

a couple of In addition ,

thirty-threewere punishedby death, twenty-onewere fined, and 245 were moved;

see Leon RadzinowiczandRoger Hood, TheEmergenceof Presidio Policy, volume. 5 of any History of English Criminal Law and Its Government from 1750 (Lon-

add, 1986), l. 777. Within a move to privatizepunishment, publicexecutionswere left behind in 1868; thereafter, hangingtook place behindprison walls; see V. A. C. Gatrell, The Clinging Tree: Performance and the English People, 1770-1868 (Oxford, 1994), pp. 589Journal of English Studies 36 (July 1997): 285-324

? 1997 by The NorthAmericanConferenceon BritishStudies.

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BAILEY

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prisons had been plugging the gap left by the end of transportationto Down under. The three hundred or so local prisons in the 1830s, to which offenders were dispatched for...

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