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The Social Order of the Underworld: How Prison Gangs Govern the American Penal System

David Skarbek
Format
Book
Published
New York, NY : Oxford University Press, [2014]
Language
English
ISBN
9780199328499, 0199328498, 9780199328505, 0199328501
Summary
"When most people think of prison gangs, they think of chaotic bands of violent, racist thugs. Few people think of gangs as sophisticated organizations (often with elaborate written constitutions) that regulate the prison black market, adjudicate conflicts, and strategically balance the competing demands of inmates, gang members, and correctional officers. Yet as David Skarbek argues, gangs form to create order among outlaws, producing alternative governance institutions to facilitate illegal activity. He uses economics to explore the secret world of the convict culture, inmate hierarchy, and prison gang politics, and to explain why prison gangs form, how formal institutions affect them, and why they have a powerful influence over crime even beyond prison walls. The ramifications of his findings extend far beyond the seemingly irrational and often tragic society of captives. They also illuminate how social and political order can emerge in conditions where the traditional institutions of governance do not exist."--Publisher description.
Contents
  • Governance institutions and the prison community : Men's Central Jail
  • The convict code : death row
  • The rise of prison gangs : my brother's keeper
  • Governance in the society of captives : background check
  • The internal organization of prison gangs : MacArthur Park
  • How prison gangs govern the outside : puppet
  • What works?.
Description
xii, 224 pages : illustrations ; 25 cm
Notes
Includes bibliographical references (pages 193-216) and index.
Technical Details
  • Access in Virgo Classic
  • Staff View

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    a| New York, NY : b| Oxford University Press, c| [2014]
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    a| Governance institutions and the prison community : Men's Central Jail -- The convict code : death row -- The rise of prison gangs : my brother's keeper -- Governance in the society of captives : background check -- The internal organization of prison gangs : MacArthur Park -- How prison gangs govern the outside : puppet -- What works?.
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    a| "When most people think of prison gangs, they think of chaotic bands of violent, racist thugs. Few people think of gangs as sophisticated organizations (often with elaborate written constitutions) that regulate the prison black market, adjudicate conflicts, and strategically balance the competing demands of inmates, gang members, and correctional officers. Yet as David Skarbek argues, gangs form to create order among outlaws, producing alternative governance institutions to facilitate illegal activity. He uses economics to explore the secret world of the convict culture, inmate hierarchy, and prison gang politics, and to explain why prison gangs form, how formal institutions affect them, and why they have a powerful influence over crime even beyond prison walls. The ramifications of his findings extend far beyond the seemingly irrational and often tragic society of captives. They also illuminate how social and political order can emerge in conditions where the traditional institutions of governance do not exist."--Publisher description.
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    a| Prison gangs z| United States.
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    a| Prison administration z| United States.
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    a| Prison violence z| United States.
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    a| Prisoners z| United States.
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    a| HV6439 .U5 S557 2014 w| LC i| X031650947 k| CHECKEDOUT l| STACKS m| ALDERMAN t| BOOK
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