The Globalization of Supermax Prisons
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The Globalization of Supermax Prisons

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"Supermax" prisons, conceived by the United States in the early 1980s, are typically reserved for convicted political criminals such as terrorists and spies and for other inmates who are considered to pose a serious ongoing threat to the wider community, to the security of correctional institutions, or to the safety of other inmates. Prisoners are usually restricted to their cells for up to twenty-three hours a day and typically have minimal contact with other inmates and correctional staff. The Globalization of Supermax Prisons examines why nine advanced industrialized countries have adopted the supermax prototype. Featuring essays that look at the U.S.-run prisons of Abu Ghraib and Guantanemo, this collection seeks to determine if the American model is the basis for the establishment of these facilities and considers such issues as the support or opposition to the building of a supermax and why opposition efforts failed; the allegation of human rights abuses within these prisons; and the extent to which the decision to build a supermax was influenced by developments in the United States. Additionally, contributors address such domestic matters as the role of crime rates, media sensationalism, and terrorism in each country's decision to build a supermax prison.

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  • Hardback | 242 pages
  • 158 x 230 x 26mm | 521.63g
  • 10 Feb 2013
  • Rutgers University Press
  • New Brunswick, NJ
  • English
  • 1, black & white illustrations
  • 0813557410
  • 9780813557410

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Author Information

JEFFREY IAN ROSS is a professor in the School of Criminal Justice and a fellow of the Center for International and Comparative Law at the University of Baltimore. He is the author, coauthor, editor, or coeditor of numerous books, including "Beyond Bars: Rejoining Society after Prison," "Convict Criminology," and "Special Problems in Corrections."

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Review quote

"An important and timely collection of essays examining the propagation of the American 'Supermax' model around the globe. . . . An essential read for researchers, policy makers and concerned citizens alike."--Sharon Shalev"author of Supermax: Controlling Risk through Solitary Confinement" (08/16/2012)

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