Pervasive Punishment: Making Sense of Mass Supervision

Fergus McNeill
Glasgow University, UK

Product Details
16 Nov 2018
Emerald Publishing Limited
264 pages - 138 x 216mm
Despite its dramatic proliferation and diversification in recent decades, supervisory forms of punishment in the community (like probation, parole and unpaid work) have been largely invisible in scholarly and public discussion of criminal justice and its development in late-modern societies. The long-standing pre-occupation with the prison, and more recent concerns about 'mass incarceration' have allowed the emergence of 'mass supervision' to remain in the shadows.

Pervasive Punishment insists that we remedy this neglect and exemplifies how we can do so. Drawing on thirty years of personal, practice and research experiences, it offers a compelling and rich account of the scale and social distribution of mass supervision, of the processes by which it has been legitimated, and of how it is experienced by those subject to it. Its innovative approach invites readers to look at, listen to and imagine punishment beyond the prison, through the use of innovative and creative methods including photography, song-writing and story-telling to explore and to represent 'mass supervision'. By so doing, this book offers new insights into how and why combining social science and creative practice can help develop a different kind of democratic dialogue about contentious social issues like crime and punishment.

Though focused on the UK and the USA, the methods used in and analysis developed in this book will be of interest to scholars, students and practitioners elsewhere.
1. Punishment Pervades
2. Punishment Changes
3. Counting Mass Supervision
4. Legitimating Mass Supervision
5. Experiencing Mass Supervision
6. Seeing Mass Supervision
7. Supervision: Unleashed or Restrained?
Postscript. Making stories and songs from supervision; Fergus McNeill and Jo Collinson Scott
Appendix. The Invisible Collar (A story about supervision)
Fergus McNeill is Professor of Criminology & Social Work at the University of Glasgow where he works in Sociology and in the Scottish Centre for Crime and Justice Research. His research explores institutions, cultures and practices of punishment, and alternatives to punishment, particularly in the community. Before becoming an academic, he worked in drug rehabilitation and as a criminal justice social worker.
"an impassioned, informative and important work that delivers deep insights into the character of mass supervision" - Punishment and Society

“Brings to life the deep harms of supervision and how we might reconfigure it to create more justice for individuals and our communities” - Dr Michelle S. Phelps, University of Minnesota, USA

“Remarkable and ground-breaking…this singular work will challenge your understanding of punishment as well as your views about the limitations of academic work” - Professor Shadd Maruna, Queen’s University Belfast, UK

“Deserves to be widely read by scholars, students and policy makers” - Dr Gwen Robinson, University of Sheffield, UK

“An immensely readable account that is compassionate, empathetic, and humane – yet sharply observed and deeply critical” -

Professor David Garland, New York University, USA

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