Essay Title: 

Prison Culture

March 24, 2016 | Author: | Posted in english, literature and language

Prison Culture

It is commonly acknowledged that in prisons , inmates ‘ influence on one another deepens criminal behavior that is already present . Inmates begin to learn the criminal ideology of the correctional facility . Generally they also develop new habits of dressing , sleeping , eating . They develop a new language and become dependent upon others for food , work assignments , and protection . Further on , inmates without allies can find their time difficult . In to better ensure self-protection , then it is only natural that an individual inmate turns toward a gang affiliation , even within a context [banner_entry_middle]

of zero tolerance of gang formation by institutional policy . Even within the restricted confines of a prison , gangs may have as much influence as they would normally have on streets . All such close-knit interactions between inmates and group dynamics inside a prison create and reinforce a distinct prison subculture . There develops a general culture of the penitentiary , in terms of folkways , mores , customs , as well as language (Hensley 2002

Language is normally very closely associated with culture . In prisons the fact that inmates have a language ‘ to relate to the experiences of their daily life inside , with gangs communicating in a lingo interlaced with special terminologies , reflects the extent of prevalence and influence of prison culture upon inmates . A prison culture helps create a sense of identity , encourages a set of expected behaviors , and promotes distinct goals in the actions of those people who are incarcerated (Huft , Kite 2003 . The prison culture , in effect , becomes a synthetic culture bringing together people from various criminal backgrounds , levels of education , cultures and ethnicities to share a new set of values and attitudes that would better suit the conditions of the prison . Any culture in normal human society consists of distinctive characteristics in regard to values and norms , beliefs and attitudes of the people that constitute it a culture also covers such diverse areas as relationships , communication and language , sense of self and space appearance and dress , work habits and practices , and food and eating habits of the people , in short it creates a special mould for the entire lifestyle of a people making up a community . Prison cultures , even within often their highly abnormal settings , mirror cultures of normal societies in terms their wide-ranging influence on the thoughts and behavior of people

However , when compared to cultural patterns in normal societies , the cultural norms within prison societies appear highly skewed and understandably so , given the overly oppressive , dangerous and debilitating environment of a typical large-scale prison . There is a marked tendency for prison cultures to value and obedience , power over the weak or disenfranchised , and strict adherence to policies and procedures . Such authoritative and fascist regime is almost inevitable in view of criminal psychology that understands only the language of power and not that of fairness and equality . As a consequence , many prisons are characterized by a culture of fear . Further , minorities are often over-represented in prison , and such a situation can lead to an overt manifestation of racism… [banner_entry_footer]

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