Description : 'the love of my life'... John Ward, writing whilst incarcerated on Norfolk Island, tells a story of thwarted love that–he claims–led him to a life of crime: including theft, sexual assault and more. In telling the candid story of his downfall he exposes his own ruthlessness and lack of empathy. This book, using the diary as its base, is fascinating on so many levels. It is an insight into the criminal mind, ably examined by author June Slee. It is a glimpse into 19th–century aristocratic life–dress, food, pastimes and prejudices–from a servant's perspective (Ward was a groom to an officer gentleman). And it is a unique record, perhaps the only extant diary ever written during the Australian penal era whilst its convict writer was imprisoned. Plus, Ward records a particular moment in our history: not only life aboard prison hulks which he describes in detail but also the timing of his arrival in Sydney when convicts were no longer being accepted; he was sent straight to Norfolk Island where we get a fascinating insight into the rule of Captain Alexander Maconochie. Moconochie believed in a system of improvement for convicts based on a marks system for good behaviour rather than humiliating punishment. In this way, Ward gained access to writing materials for his diary. It's all in this book: love, history, convicts, crime and criminology, Norfolk Island ... The author weaves the diary – Ward’s own words – into her text seamlessly to tell a gripping story. Illustrated with over 150 images including paintings, photographs, documents, newspapers and drawings, the book includes text box features that elucidate aspects of life at the time: oyster bars and eating out, disease, smuggling, county justice, convict marriage, convict class and society, the end of transportation, and more. June Slee is an experienced writer and researcher, lecturer and practitioner in the field of criminology, particularly relating to the Australian convict era. Slee was immediately drawn to Ward’s story, not just for its insight into 19th-century crime and punishment, but also for its outstanding literary style and rarity as a diary that was written while its author was still incarcerated. Currently she is completing another book on convictism and has plans for two further books. June currently lives in New Zealand
Description : The story of a teenage thief who became a killer—and how prison transformed him—in turn-of-the-century New England. On a crisp September evening in 1899, a seventeen-year-old petty thief named Edwin Ray Snow shot and killed a bakery deliveryman named Jimmy Whittemore outside Yarmouth, Massachusetts. The gunshots rang out for only a moment, but the effects resounded on Cape Cod for half a century. The idyllic atmosphere of turn-of-the-century Cape Cod was shattered in a flash. Soon after the crime, Snow pleaded guilty to murder in the first degree, and was the first person ever to be sentenced to death by electric chair in the state’s history. But his compelling story didn’t end there, and his redemption—earned through decades of hard time—was as dramatic and uplifting as his crime was heinous. Drawing upon town records, historical documents, correspondence and newspapers of the day, The Cape Cod Murder of 1899 recreates the towns of Dennis and Yarmouth at the turn of the century and examines the details of a murder that shook Cape Cod to its core.
Description : Few people experience life inside of prison. Even fewer are charged with the formidable responsibility of deciding whether inmates should be released. In his twenty-four years on the Rhode Island Parole Board, Frederic G. Reamer has judged the fates of thousands of inmates, deciding which are ready to reenter society and which are not. It is a complicated choice that balances injury to victims and their families against an offender's capacity for transformation. With rich retellings of criminal cases—some banal, some brutal—On the Parole Board is a singular book that explains from an insider's perspective how a variety of factors play into the board's decisions: the ongoing effect on victims and their loved ones, the life histories of offenders, the circumstances of the crimes, and the powerful and often extraordinary displays of forgiveness and remorse. Pulling back the curtain on a process largely shrouded in mystery, Reamer lays bare the thorny philosophical issues of crime and justice and their staggering consequences for inmates, victims, and the public at large. Reamer and his colleagues often hope, despite encountering behavior at its worst, that criminals who have made horrible mistakes have the capacity for redemption. Yet that hope must be tempered with a realistic appraisal of risk, given the potentially grave consequences of releasing an inmate who may commit a future crime. This book will appeal to anyone interested in the complexities of the criminal justice system, the need to correct its injustices, and the challenges of those who must decide when justice has been served.
Description : The author of four truly important novels--The Recognitions in 1955, J R in 1975, Carpenter's Gothic in 1985, and A Frolic of His Own in 1995--William Gaddis is considered by many literary scholars to be one of the most outstanding novelists of the twentieth century, to be spoken of in the same breath as James Joyce, Robert Musil, and Thomas Pynchon. Hints and Guesses: William Gaddis's Fiction of Longing is the first scholarly work to discuss all four Gaddis novels. While not dismissing the inclination of many scholars to view Gaddis's fiction as postmodern, Christopher Knight moves critical response in another direction, toward a discussion of Gaddis's significance as a satirist and social critic. Knight investigates Gaddis's predominant thematic interests, including those of contemporary aesthetics, Flemish painting, forgery, corporate America, Third World politics, and the U.S. legal system. What Knight finds is an author not only acutely sensitive to post-war social realities but also one whose critique carries with it an implied utopian dimension.
Description : The prison population in England and Wales in 2004 reached its highest level ever recorded. It is almost double what it was in 1991, and one of the highest in Western Europe . We now have particularly high numbers of women, black people, young people and even the elderly behind bars. Suicide in prison is up 40%, drug-use is widespread and access to education and rehabilitation programmes is being cut. On some prison wings slopping out has been brought back. Our prisons are a public disgrace. Christian anthropology makes clear that this offends against human dignity and the common good. The Catholic Church is committed to justice, mercy, the rights of the individual in society and not least hope and redemption. This important new publication has been prepared as a significant contribution of the Roman Catholic Church in this country to a situation which is already a crisis but which could turn into a disaster. This book, from the Department of Christian Responsibility & Citizenship of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of England and Wales, will be of interest to all those interested in the dignity of the human being- not just from a religious perspective but in a way to appeal to all people of good will. There are many reforming agencies in the UK- the Howard League, The Bridge - but this book also takes the form of a plea to government and to all those in authority who are concerned with our prison services.
Description : Arguments for forgiveness, mercy, and clemency abound. These arguments flourish in organized religion, fiction, philosophy, and law as well as in everyday conversations of daily life among parents and children, teachers and students, and criminals and those who judge them. As common as these arguments are, we are often left with an incomplete understanding of what we mean when we speak about them. This volume examines the registers of individual psychology, religious belief, social practice, and political power circulating in and around those who forgive, grant mercy, or pose clemency power. The authors suggest that, in many ways, necessary examinations of the questions of forgiveness and pardon and the connection between mercy and justice are only just beginning.
Description : This bold work confronts the spirit of punishment that permeates our culture and its deleterious effects on today's penal system and society at large. Rooted in experiences of prison reality, the book sets forth an original theory about the theological roots of our current punitive ethos and offers a creative antidote informed by a commitment to restorative justice. Snyder shows that the spirit of punishment in our culture is rooted in and reinforced by popular Christian misunderstandings of human nature and God's grace. These misunderstandings include two consequential errors: the absence of any notion of "creation grace" and an understanding of "redemption grace" couched exclusively in individualistic, internalized, and nonhistorical terms. In both cases the social-historical dimensions of grace necessary for holistic redemption are ignored. These theological distortions, coupled with a prevailing cultural context that divides people between "them" and "us"-the most virulent form of which is racism-make a spirit of punishment inevitable. Snyder finds clues for a different understanding of humanity and God in responses to crime categorized as "restorative justice." These alternative perspectives seek redemption not only for the perpetrator but also for the victims of crime and the larger community. They also recognize all persons as "graced," no matter what their actions may have been. Drawing on these clues, Snyder initiates fresh ways of thinking about the traditional theological concepts of covenant, incarnation, and trinity as foundations for a restorative approach to justice. He also challenges religious communities to understand God's good news in ways that offer hope for a transformed world. The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Punishment is an eye-opening work with profound implications for contemporary social life.
Description : Presents a series of critical essays discussing the structure, themes, and subject matter of Dostoevsky's novel of murder and guilt.
Description : This Guide sets out how in nine sessions the key themes of the book can be explored and discussed by a group, with practical suggestions about how people might become more involved, and how, from a Christian perspective, public policy could be changed for the better. This important book deserves to be taken seriously if we are to face what is happening and do what we can to help improve a penal system that is still far from what any civilised society should be content with.