- Series Information
- The Oxford Handbook of Prisons and Imprisonment
- List of Contributors
- The Imprisonment Boom of the Late Twentieth Century: Past, Present, and Future
- Who Goes to Prison?
- Mass Incarceration and Conditions of Confinement
- Exploring Imprisonment across Cross-National Contexts
- Theories of Mass Incarceration
- Subcultural Adaptations to Incarceration
- The Real Gangbanging Is in Prison
- Women in Prison
- Impact of Incarceration on Families and Communities
- The Two Cultures: Correctional Officers and Key Differences in Institutional Climate
- Measuring and Explaining Inmate Misconduct
- Prison Riots
- Drugs and Prisons
- A General Model of Harm in Correctional Settings
- Understanding the Contours of Prison Disciplinary Procedures
- The Effects of Administrative Segregation: A Lesson in Knowledge Cumulation
- A Comparison of British and American Policies for Managing Dangerous Prisoners: A Question of Legitimacy
- Adult Offender Assessment and Classification in Custodial Settings
- Principles of Effective Intervention with Incarcerated Offenders
- Employment and Vocation Programs in Prison
- Treating Sex Offenders in Prison
- The Multiple Faces of Reentry
- Implementing Prison-based Treatment Programs
- Preventing Suicide in Detention and Correctional Facilities
- Offenders with Mental Illness in Prison
- The Problem of Incarcerating Juveniles with Adults
- The Effect of Prisons on Crime
- Private Prisons in a New Environment
- Policy and Program Innovations in Prisons
- Useful versus Harmful Prison Policies
Abstract and Keywords
This essay considers debate over the extent to which some inmates should be isolated from others within prison, the impact of isolation on psychological well-being during confinement, and the implications for supermax prisons with 23-hour lockdown. The need for administrative segregation and solitary confinement is assessed in the context of improving the safety of individual inmates as well as preventing collective violence. These ideas are contrasted with the downside of isolation, including the possibility of compounding problems with existing mental illnesses, the development of “new” psychological problems during confinement, increased demands for psychological and psychiatric resources, and the problems posed for successful re-entry. However, contrary to some scholarly discourses, evidence to date suggests that administrative segregation does not produce dramatic negative psychological effects unless extreme conditions apply.
Paul Gendreau OC, PhD, is Professor Emeritus, University of New Brunswick, New Brunswick, Canada. He has received the Order of Canada for his contributions to the correctional field. He has published over 200 articles on correctional issues primarily in the areas of effective correctional treatment, the prediction of recidivism and the effects of prison life. He was the first researcher to experimentally explore the effects of solitary confinement on offenders.
Ryan M. Labrecque PhD, is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Criminology and Criminal Justice at Portland State University. His research focuses on the evaluation of correctional interventions, the effects of prison life, the development of risk and needs assessments for community and institutional corrections settings, and the transfer of knowledge to practitioners and policy makers. His work has appeared in Criminal Justice Policy Review; Journal of Crime and Justice; Psychology, Public Policy, and Law; Victims and Offenders; Violence and Victims; and most recently in Corrections: Policy, Practice and Research.
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