Gender and Identity in Prison

The experience of incarceration can have a tremendous impact on an individual’s sense of self, or identity, and this impact varies by gender. Because over 90% of the incarcerated people in the United States and around the world are male, prisons have traditionally been understood to be masculine spaces regardless of whom they confine. When society constructs prisoners as male, the people with other gender identities (i.e., women and transgender people) may be overlooked. In light of the vulnerabilities experienced by incarcerated people who do not identify as male, correctional systems are seeking to make prisons and jails more gender responsive.

The Social Construction of Gender and Identity

Unpacking the complicated meanings of gender and identity is critical to understanding how these constructs are enacted in ...

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