Imprisoned and in prison: Organised defences working against black women and girls

Dennis, Maxine (2020) Imprisoned and in prison: Organised defences working against black women and girls. In: Invisible trauma: Women, difference and the criminal justice system. Routledge, Abingdon, pp. 168-186. ISBN 978-1138218666

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Abstract

Prison staff work in a highly regimented and restrictive environment, tasked with controlling others, which can affect one’s capacity to think and feel. Often a consequence is the loss of experienced staff who can have a calming influence on new staff and those with chronic mental health difficulties or seasoned prisoners. One has to be mindful of staff who are burned out or apathetic and themselves in need of career opportunities to enliven their practice and reduce their vicarious traumatisation; both they and the prisoners can become institutionalised and depressed. The prisoner may identify with the perception of herself as a frightening and dangerous person, and respond accordingly, as she is faced with a distorted reflection of herself, and feels threatened and unseen. Going inside prison at 20 enabled her to come off drugs and, ironically, gave her the opportunity to engage in counselling that had never been offered to her in the community.

Item Type: Book Section
Subjects: Criminology > Criminal Justice Systems
Groups & Organisations > Racial/Cultural Groups
Race and Culture > Race- Sociology
Sex Psychology > Females/Women
Department/People: Adult and Forensic Services
URI: http://repository.tavistockandportman.ac.uk/id/eprint/2204

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