In Community Punishment: European perspectives, the authors place punishment in the community under the spotlight by exploring the origins, evolution and adaptations of supervision in 11 European jurisdictions. For most people, punishment in the criminal justice system is synonymous with imprisonment. Yet, both in Europe and in the USA, the numbers of people under some form of penal supervision in the community far exceeds the numbers in prison, and many prisoners are released under supervision. Written and edited by leading scholars in the field, this collection advances the sociology of punishment by illuminating the neglected but crucial phenomenon of ‘mass supervision’.
As well as putting criminological and penological theories to the test in an examination of their ability to explain the evolution of punishment beyond the prison, and across diverse states, the contributors to this volume also assess the appropriateness of the term ‘community punishment’ in different parts of Europe. Engaging in a serious exploration of common themes and differences in the jurisdictions included in the collection, the authors go on to examine how ‘community punishment’ came into being in their jurisdiction and how its institutional forms and practices have been legitimated and re-legitimated in response to shifting social, cultural and political contexts.
This book is essential reading for academics and students involved in the study of both community punishment and comparative penology, but will also be of great interest to criminal justice policymakers, managers and practitioners.