With Punishing the Poor, Loïc Wacquant makes an important and timely contribution in bringing attention to prisons as a core polit- ical institution of neoliberal. Punishing the Poor: The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity. By Loïc Wacquant. Durham, NC: Duke University Press, Pp. $ (cloth);. As well as serving an economic function, Loïc Wacquant argues that the transformation from welfare to mass incarceration and prison/workfare.

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His critique is compelling: Visit the Author’s Website.

Punishing the Poor: The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity

Yet, as set out in this harrowing sociological study of American prisonfare, these figures only barely begin to tell the story of the colossal social and political shifts that truly underlie their magnitude. The final part “European Declinations” charts the growing European tendancy to follow the example of the United States. In this portrait prison serves three purposes: Gabriel Alonso arias rated it really liked it Aug 11, Excited to finish this one. The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity.

His leaps of metaphor waacquant his daring allusions are a continuous and often delightful spectacle. Schram, Social Service Review. View additional images and download publicity materials. You could not be signed in.

Punishing the Poor makes a convincing case for the failure of the American penal system, which has seen staggering expansion despite a reduction in crime rates.

Punishing the Poor: The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity by Loïc Wacquant

It should be read—and debated. In this, this is a powerful book.

Feb 03, gabrielle added it. Annick rated it liked it Mar 21, Duke University Press,pp.

Feb 11, Jorge Caballero rated it liked it. Trivia About Punishing the Poo Sheikh Tajamul rated it liked it Nov 07, Tables and Figures ix Prologue: Wacquant confronts orthodox as well as more critical, fashionable accounts of modern penality and Hence the book’s central thesis – pitched here punihsing a update of Francis Fox Piven and Richard Cloward’s seminal Regulating the Poor – regarding the necessity of thinking the recent policy dynamics of both the prison and the welfare state as inseparably entwined, on pain of rendering them simply incomprehensible when treated in isolation.

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The punitive turn of penal policy in the United States after the acme of the Civil Rights movement responds not to rising criminal insecurity but to the social insecurity spawned by the fragmentation of wage labor and the shakeup of the ethnoracial hierarchy. It should be read carefully and intentionally in graduate courses, in advanced undergraduate seminars, and among scholarly and professional circles alike.

Such, at any rate, is the logic of the state traced here in this brutal social and political retelling, which, in charting the almost perfectly inverse relationship between welfare and prisonfare, aims to decisively explain the delirious expansion of American carceral field from the s onward.

Punishing the Poor | Duke University Press

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,oic Profiling, Policing, and Punishing in an Actuarial Age. Punishing the Poor is worth a look for these reasons alone. America as Living Laboratory for the Neoliberal Future xi 1. To me, this lack of objectivity makes me question the validity of some of his data and conclusions and detracts from his otherwise notable study into this very essential sociological subject.

Zach Baumgart rated it it was amazing Apr 01, With an incarcerated population of 2. To ask other readers questions about Punishing the Poorplease sign up.


This paternalist program of penalization of poverty aims to curb the urban disorders wrought by economic deregulation and to impose precarious employment on the postindustrial proletariat. This in itself counts as a substantial contribution to an intellectually intriguing, politically pressing, and ethically troubling field.

As Wacquant puts it, never has the ‘grandeur of the penal state’ shown itself more ostentatiously than it has in recent times, with the drive to regulate, discipline, and punish making itself felt all across the estate of the marginalised classes, in ever more intense and chillingly creative ways as an aside, Wacquant is keen to distance himself from the work of Michel Foucault on this point, who, in his forecast of the decline of the prison as an institution of societal control, foresaw neither the explosive growth of penal practices, nor their being put to use for the sheer neutralisation of bodies as opposed to their function as a mechanism of discipline.

Punishing the Poor would also be well received by scholars interested in poverty and inequality, welfare reform, prison reform, political sociology and contemporary theory. Maya rated it it was amazing May 11, Alice G rated it it was amazing Sep 27, Punishing the Poor is an important addition and counter-balance to existing literature addressing neoliberal penal and social policy. A tour de force! The Functions of Public Welfare.