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Crime and Punishment in America

Elliott Currie

Picador

“Earnest, free of jargon, lucid…This is a book that ought to be read by anyone concerned about crime and punishment in America.”—The Washington Post Book World

A Finalist for the Pulitzer Prize

When Crime and Punishment in America was first published in 1998, the national incarceration rate had doubled in just over a decade, and yet the United States remained—by an overwhelming margin—the most violent industrialized society in the world.

Today, there are several hundred thousand more inmates in the penal system, yet violence remains endemic in many American communities. In this groundbreaking and revelatory work, renowned criminologist Elliott Currie offers a vivid critique of our nation’s prison policies and turns his penetrating eye toward recent developments in criminal justice, showing us the path to a more peaceable and just society. Cogent, compelling, and grounded in years of original research, this newly revised edition of Crime and Punishment in America will continue to frame the way we think about imprisonment for years to come.

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1      ASSESSING THE PRISON EXPERIMENT
 
 
Just as violent crime has become part of the accepted backdrop of life in the United States, so too has the growth of the system we’ve established to contain it. A huge and constantly expanding penal system seems to us like a normal and inevitable feature of modem life. But what we have witnessed in the past quarter century is nothing less than a revolution in our justice system—a transformation unprecedented in our own history, or in that of any other industrial democracy.
I
In 1971 there
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

  • Elliott Currie

  • Elliott Currie is the author of Confronting Crime, Reckoning, and The Road to Whatever. An internationally recognized authority on youth and crime, he is a professor of criminology, law, and society at the University of California, Irvine.
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Crime and Punishment in America

Elliott Currie

Pulitzer Prize - Finalist
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Picador

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