• Summary
  • Contents
  • Subject index

'This Course Companion in Criminal Justice by Ursula Smartt is to be applauded. It is an essential handbook for all students and practitioners who are studying the criminal justice system. The user-friendly framework provides students with practical support in how they can organise their approach to studying to maximise their knowledge and revision skills. I have no hesitation in commending this Companion as a valuable complementary text' - Professor Allyson MacVean, John Grieve Centre for Policing & Community Safety, Buckinghamshire Chilterns University College"Congratulations to Ursula Smartt and Sage on a most welcome 'skills' text for Criminal Justice students... The book is concise, clear, well-organised and accessible - highly recommended." Stephen Parrott, Birkbeck, University of LondonCriminal Justice by Ursula Smartt is part of an exciting new ...


Whilst prison is serving its purpose as the ultimate form of punishment in most western European countries prison can also be an isolating and brutal experience for the offender. Research has found that first-time imprisonment can be particularly traumatic for vulnerable people i.e. those with mental health problems, drug addicts or the young.

This section introduces the reader firstly to the history of the prison, dating back to the early 18th century with key thinkers like Jeremy Bentham and the notion of the so-called ‘Benthamite’ ideal of the ‘all seeing’ Panopticon Penitentiary. You will be introduced to the basic principles of penological theory with some penal reform policies of the 20th and 21st centuries.

Secondly, you will read about prison overcrowding and reasons for this. The ...

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