Ironies of Imprisonment examines in-depth an array of problems confronting correctional programs and policies from the author's singular and consistent critical viewpoint. The book challenges the prevailing logic of mass incarceration and traces the ironies of imprisonment to their root causes, manifesting in social, political, economic, and racial inequality. Unique and accessible, this book promises to stimulate spirited discussion and debate over the use of prisons.
"Michael Welch's book is an invitation to think. It is an invitation to grow intellectually and critically, as a consumer of crime policy and an observer of the American scene. Written by a scholar who has dedicated his work to uncovering the hidden ironies of formal crime policy, this is a collection of essays of depth and significance."
-- Todd R. Clear
"The American correctional system is too often misshaped by a toxic mixture of ideology, anti-intellectualism, wishful thinking, and structural interests. Michael Welch uses his substantial critical skills to illuminate how these various factors intersect to create policies and practices that produce, in the end, more injustice and less public safety. His sobering analysis deconstructs the rhetoric used to justify mass imprisonment and its unanticipated, disquieting consequences."
-- Frank Cullen
"Michael Welch has written a book which anyone who is looking for an alternative to conventional and conservative approaches to prisons and punishment should read. Welch provides the groundwork for the development of a penology which engages critically with the growing tensions and ironies of imprisonment."
-- Roger Matthews"This book brings to the reader in an accessible and engaging way questions of central concern to criminologists, politicians, penal reformists, and policy makers . . . This book achieves its aim in demonstrating that the prison enterprise is inhumane and unjust in its delivery of justice."
-- Azrini Wahidin * Springer *