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What’s wrong with the sociology of punishment?

Braithwaite, John
June 4, 2015

Source: (2003) Theoretical Criminology. 7(1): 5-28.

The sociology of punishment is seen through the work of David Garland (2001) as contributing useful insights, but less than it might because of its focus on societal choices of whether and how
to punish instead of on choices of whether to regulate by punishment or by a range of other important strategies. A problem in Garland’s genealogical method is that branches of the genealogy
are sawn off the branches where the chosen instruments of regulation decentre punishment. This blinds us to the hybridity of predominantly punitive regulation of crime in the streets that is
reshaped by more risk-preventive and restorative technologies of regulation for crime in the suites, and vice versa.


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