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Make-up of the post from November 29th

Erin's picture

I am really trying to make up the two posts I missed for Barb’s class

I think want to reflect more on the last last Friday’s discussion about looking-glass identity transformation inside the prison. The reading was very comprehensive and easy to read however the indications behind all text are very provoking and indeed caused many disagreement and tensions.  

Two important things were mentioned throughout the text which I think are really relevant to our conversation: labeling and rehabilitation.

Firstly, labeling theory talked about the tendency of criminals to conduct the crimes again compare to normal people. I don’t want to question the validation of this theory. However, just because of this theory, their wishes to transform their lives became harder. They have to spend effort not only correct their mistakes but also have to overcome the discriminations they would likely to get from surrounding environment.  Also, the criminal record will remain in one’s history. Such record would make opportunity to find proper employment much harder. Even the correction officer says that he doesn’t think people can really change from his experiences. He even thinks sometimes inmate will say the words that the correction officer likes to hear in order to achieve certain purpose. How can you blame this officer for not caring enough after so many people has disappointed him? I thinking this labeling theory is one of the most important obstacles that inmate need to overcome and also the stereotypes that the public need to get rid of. However, I wonder if there are any effective ways to do so.  Maybe, not to make the mistakes would be better.

Secondly, the need to get recognition form the environment is crucial for many people in rehabilitation. This point was resonated a lot in our discussion in the Canery. A lot of the women mentioned the important of support from their family members. The need to be established first and gain the recognition from the environment is important steps in the rehabilitation. We had another discussion about some point raised in the article online. The main focus was that such a theory actually took away a lot of agencies form people and people become restrained in the environment. However, I do believe that this theory applies accurately to the inmate rehabilitation. Besides all the difficulties I mentioned in the previous paragraphs, there are way more problems that waiting to be solved on the way to restart the life after incarceration. Therefore, the struggle will be long and hard. The help, support and encouragement form people who care about them are position energy for them to do better later on. Along the way of rehabilitation, such theory will provide them with better psychological support.

Anyway, I found this article very helpful when I was trying to understand situation of the inmate face when going through rehabilitation.