Audience, borders and architecture: the contours of control

Armstrong, S.C. and McAra, L. (2006) Audience, borders and architecture: the contours of control. In: Perspectives on Punishment: The Contours of Control. Oxford University Press: Oxford, pp. 1-30. ISBN 9780199278763

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The chapter explores the context of contemporary punishment, showing it is markedly different from that which sparked the radical criminology of the 1970s and the sociological turn in penology in the 1980s. The new millennium has brought with it major changes in control in reaction to 9/11, the transformative effects of the information age, new paradigms of punishment including restorative justice, and new frameworks of analysis such as the New Penology thesis. We argue that a new lens is needed to make sense of these developments and proffer three structuring concepts towards this end: audience, borders and architecture. 'Audiences' captures both the increasing self-consciousness with which governments make criminal justice policy in an era of transparency, and the constitution of new interests who receive and influence policy. 'Borders' recognise both geographical and social processes of delimiting insiders and outsiders, and further, addresses the porousness of boundaries between largely national concerns about crime and trans-national anxieties about terrorism. Finally, our elaboration of a concept of 'architecture' challenges the iconic and deterministic role the prison has played in analysing modern punishment, arguing that more mundane yet insidious features of control have been neglected as a result. The chapter overall provides a call to arms for a 21st century sociology of punishment that is creative, political and rigorous.

Item Type:Book Sections
Keywords:penology, punishment, social theory, prison
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Armstrong, Professor Sarah
Authors: Armstrong, S.C., and McAra, L.
Subjects:H Social Sciences > H Social Sciences (General)
College/School:College of Social Sciences > School of Social and Political Sciences > Sociology Anthropology and Applied Social Sciences
Journal Name:Contours of Control
Publisher:Oxford University Press

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