Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks

Derek A. Kreager, David R. Schaefer, Martin Bouchard, Dana L. Haynie, Sara Wakefield, Jacob Young, Gary Zajac

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

23 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The mid-twentieth century witnessed a surge of American prison ethnographies focused on inmate society and the social structures that guide inmate life. Ironically, this literature virtually froze in the 1980s just as the country entered a period of unprecedented prison expansion, and has only recently begun to thaw. In this manuscript, we develop a rationale for returning inmate society to the forefront of criminological inquiry, and suggest that network science provides an ideal framework for achieving this end. In so doing, we show that a network perspective extends prison ethnographies by allowing quantitative assessment of prison culture and illuminating basic characteristics of prison social structure that are essential for improving inmate safety, health, and community reentry outcomes. We conclude by demonstrating the feasibility and promise of inmate network research with findings from a recent small-scale study of a maximum-security prison work unit.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJustice Quarterly
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - Feb 28 2015

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Criminology
Prisons
criminology
correctional institution
Cultural Anthropology
social structure
ethnography
twentieth century
Safety
Health
science
health
Research
community

Keywords

  • incarceration
  • inmates
  • prison
  • social networks
  • structure

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Law
  • Pathology and Forensic Medicine

Cite this

Kreager, D. A., Schaefer, D. R., Bouchard, M., Haynie, D. L., Wakefield, S., Young, J., & Zajac, G. (Accepted/In press). Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks. Justice Quarterly. https://doi.org/10.1080/07418825.2015.1016090

Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks. / Kreager, Derek A.; Schaefer, David R.; Bouchard, Martin; Haynie, Dana L.; Wakefield, Sara; Young, Jacob; Zajac, Gary.

In: Justice Quarterly, 28.02.2015.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Kreager, DA, Schaefer, DR, Bouchard, M, Haynie, DL, Wakefield, S, Young, J & Zajac, G 2015, 'Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks', Justice Quarterly. https://doi.org/10.1080/07418825.2015.1016090
Kreager DA, Schaefer DR, Bouchard M, Haynie DL, Wakefield S, Young J et al. Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks. Justice Quarterly. 2015 Feb 28. https://doi.org/10.1080/07418825.2015.1016090
Kreager, Derek A. ; Schaefer, David R. ; Bouchard, Martin ; Haynie, Dana L. ; Wakefield, Sara ; Young, Jacob ; Zajac, Gary. / Toward a Criminology of Inmate Networks. In: Justice Quarterly. 2015.
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