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Mass Incarceration Nation
How the United States Became Addicted to Prisons and Jails and How It Can Recover

$29.99 (P)

  • Date Published: November 2022
  • availability: Available
  • format: Paperback
  • isbn: 9781009267557

$ 29.99 (P)

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About the Authors
  • The United States imprisons a higher proportion of its population than any other nation. Mass Incarceration Nation offers a novel, in-the-trenches perspective to explain the factors – historical, political, and institutional – that led to the current system of mass imprisonment. The book examines the causes and impacts of mass incarceration on both the political and criminal justice systems. With accessible language and straightforward statistical analysis, former prosecutor turned law professor Jeffrey Bellin provides a formula for reform to return to the low incarceration rates that characterized the United States prior to the 1970s.

    • Uses accessible language and straightforward statistical analysis to explain the rise of mass incarceration
    • Illustrates the roles of individual actors (police, prosecutors, judges and others) in generating mass incarceration
    • Offers a durable blueprint for dramatically decreasing the number of people incarcerated in the United States of America
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    Reviews & endorsements

    ‘Bellin has provided a masterful and clear-eyed tour through the history of America's addiction to incarceration, with stories and statistics each step of the way, to illustrate how we got there. There is no better book that dissects what produced mass incarceration and how to disentangle the system that produces so much injustice in the name of justice.' Brandon Garrett, Professor, Duke Law School Director, Wilson Center for Science and Justice, Author of Convicting the Innocent and Autopsy of a Crime Lab

    ‘In this nuanced account, Bellin uses an impressive array of data and history to explain the rise mass incarceration. It is a must read for anyone who seeks to understand why America has dramatically increased the number of people in prison and anyone who wants to reverse that trend while promoting public safety.' Carissa Hessick, Professor, University of North Carolina Law School, Author of Punishment without Trial: Why Plea Bargaining Is a Bad Deal

    ‘Bellin provides the definitive account for why the United States has such a high incarceration rate, and he forcefully argues how we can fix our mass incarceration problem.' Shon Hopwood, Associate Professor, Georgetown Law School Author of Law Man: My Story of Robbing Banks, Winning Supreme Court Cases, and Finding Redemption

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    Product details

    • Date Published: November 2022
    • format: Paperback
    • isbn: 9781009267557
    • length: 220 pages
    • dimensions: 229 x 151 x 13 mm
    • weight: 0.37kg
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    Part I. What is Mass Incarceration?:
    1. Definition
    2. The deprivation of incarceration
    3. Where is mass incarceration?
    4. Distinguishing the criminal justice and criminal legal systems
    Part II. The Building Blocks of Mass Incarceration:
    5. A crime surge
    6. Repeating patterns: crime, outrage, and harsher laws
    7. Legislating more punishment and less rehabilitation
    8. The futility of fighting crime with criminal law
    9. The role of race
    Part III. The Mechanics of Mass Incarceration:
    10. More police, different arrests
    11. Prosecutors turning arrests into convictions
    12. Judges turning convictions into incarceration
    13. Judicial interpretation
    14. Punishing repeat offenses
    15. The parole and probation to prison pipeline
    16. Disappearing pardons
    17. The mindlessness of jail
    Part IV. The Road to Recovery:
    18. What success looks like
    19. (Mostly) abolish the feds
    20. Less crime part 1: changing the rules
    21. Less crime part 2: decreased offending
    22. Reducing admissions and shortening stays

  • Author

    Jeffrey Bellin, William and Mary Law School, Virginia
    Jeffrey Bellin is the Mills E. Godwin, Jr., Professor at William and Mary Law School. Prior to becoming a law professor, Bellin served as a prosecutor in Washington, DC.

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