[OU1]Locke, A study of values, quality and prison life.

Rousseau and many others but I know what you mean?











Tyler, T. R. (2006). Why people obey
the law. Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press

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14.  Tyler, T. R. (2005). Policing in black and
white: Ethnic group differences in trust and confidence in the police. Police
Quarterly, 8, 322-342

13.  Sunshine, J. & Tyler, T. R.
(2003). The role of
procedural justice and legitimacy in shaping public support for policing.
Law & Society Review, 37, 513-548

12.  Sparks, R. (1994). Can prisons be
legitimate: Penal politics, privatisation, and the timeliness of an old idea.
British Journal of Criminology, 34, 14-28

Reisig, M. D. & Mesko, G. (2009). Procedural justice, legitimacy and prisoner misconduct.
Psychology, Crime and Law, 15, 41-59.

10.  Liebling, A., Durie, L., Stiles, A.,
& Tait, S.
(2013). Revisiting
prison suicide: The role of fairness and distress. In A. Liebling
& S.
Maruna (Eds.), The effects of imprisonment (pp. 209-231). London: Routledge

Liebling, A., assisted by Arnold, H. (2004).
Prisons and their moral performance: A study of values, quality and prison
life. Oxford: Oxford University Press

8.     Liebling, A. (2011). Distinctions and
distinctiveness in the work of prison officers: Legitimacy and authority
revisited. European Journal of Criminology, 8, 484-499

7.     Jackson, J., Tyler, T. R.,
Bradford, B.,
Taylor, F.,
& Shiner, M. (2010). Legitimacy and procedural justice in prisons. Prison
Service Journal, 191, 4-10

6.     Jackson, J., Bradford, B.,
Hough, M.,
Myhill, A.,
Quinton, P.,
& Tyler, T.
R. (2012). Why
do people comply with the Law?: Legitimacy and the influence of legal
institutions. British Journal of Criminology, 52, 1051-1071

5.     Franke, D., Bierie, D.,
& Mackenzie, D. L. (2010). Legitimacy in corrections. Criminology and
Public Policy, 9, 89-117

Crewe, B., Liebling, A., & Hulley, S. (2011). Staff culture, use of authority and prisoner quality of
life in public and private sector prisons. Australian & New
Zealand Journal of Criminology, 44, 94-115.

3.     Crewe, B. (2011). Soft power in prison:
Implications for staff–prisoner relationships, liberty and legitimacy. European
Journal of Criminology, 8, 455-468

2.     Cheliotis, L. K. & Liebling, A.
(2006). Race matters in
british prisons: Towards a research agenda. British Journal of
Criminology, 46, 286-317

1.     Beetham, D. (1991). The legitimation of power. London: MacmillanBottoms, A. E.
(1999). Interpersonal
violence and social order in prisons. Crime and Justice, 26,


a crisis of legitimacy as whilst the prisoners have done some harm to society,
they deserve to be treated in a 
respectful and humane way. However the findings in the research above
suggests that there short comings in most prison regimes and despite numerous
reports, it does not seem that the plight of BME prisoners is likely to
improve. Prison is intended to take away an individuals freedom but not their
basic human rights.

It can therefore deduced from the findings above that the
prison system is

(Franke et al., 2010), argues that whilst legitimacy is
seen as a combination of procedural justice, respect and fairness, this is not
always the case in prisons as the way authority and power is not always down to
the prison officers but regime conditions. (Sparks et al., 2004) affirms how it
is that prisons can be legitimate if there is a lack of security for inmates
and poor food quality, staff shortages and prison riots such as HMP Birmingham,
Long Lartin in 2017.

Institutions such are prisons are there to safeguard,
contain, rehabilitate and educate the wrong that the prisoners have caused to
society and the harm that they have caused. Oder and legitimacy are supposed to
go hand in hand and when there is a break in this chain then this means it
gives rise to the question of legitimacy. Richard Sparks in a report about
prisons in 1994, posed the question of whether prisons can be legitimate, he
argued that though it was a state function to punish offenders, the running of
the prison system was about trying to create a balance between legitimacy and
social order. (Tom  Tyler,2006) argues
that can be illustrated by the process rather than the outcomes of decisions,
gave the example of how if the rules are fair, consistent and the structure of
a prison are clear to a prisoner, that should an outcome be what the prisoner
was not expecting then the prison can be seen to be justified.

suggests that what prisoners view as legitimate can range from the relationship
between prisoner officer and prisoner, and the conditions of the particular
prison both physical and mental and the organizational model.  However there is a faction of prisoners that
view it as less legitimate and these tend to come from ethnic minorities.
(Cheliotis & Liebling, 2006), argue that the ill treatment of prisoners and
how they view the legitimacy of prison institutions tend to be those from
ethnic minority backgrounds, legitimacy it can be argued is solely based on
individual characteristics. In England and Wales there is about 85,000 which is
much lower than that if the U.S.A, but is still significantly higher than
compared to the rest of Europe. Prisons are there to perform a multitude of
functions and some of these functions are that whilst incarcerated they will be
looked, care for and some of their basic human needs be met. However this is
not always the case as research suggests. According to a report by the (Guardian.co.uk,2017),
it suggests that the number of prisoners who are over the age 60 has more than
tripled, which means that in-spite of all the austerity cuts the government is
willing to incarcerate those who will not be able to contribute to society. As
a result of harsher sentencing, research suggests that prisons are now being
used as care homes for the elderly who cannot cope in such enviroment’s as most
of the prisons were built in the Victorian era and are incapable of providing
the necessary care for the ageing prison population. Legitimacy can also be
questioned when research looks at the overrepresentation of BME (Black and
minority ethnic) who are overrepresented in prisons and are more likely  than their white counterparts to have
excessive force used against them, this raises the question of legitimacy
within the prison system. A recent report suggest that prisoners from a BME are
54 per cent more likely to be placed on the lowest basic level, does go in
support of the fact that despite numerous reforms and reports there still lies
an inherent prison culture that supports Caucasian inmates and still treats
prisoners from BME backgrounds with bias and segregation, suggests the report.
However what does this all mean for legitimacy and procedural justice? In the
U,S as suggested by research certain outcomes such as excessive use of force,
denial of privileges this brings about prisoners to question how they are being
treated in comparison to other inmates and why they have suffered such

the prison walls, order and legitimacy have an interdependent relationship on
both prisoners and staff. According to (Crewe, Liebling, and Hull, 2011) the
many prisons in England and Wales have their own cultures, to which the
prisoners and prison officers are a part of.

to (Beetham, 1991) who is also regarded as one of the founding fathers of social
science. Argued that legitimacy was regarded as the right to obey rules within
the confines of institutions or the rules of an authority. However this goes
against the mere fact that the main reason that prisoners are in prisons is
that they have not adhered to the rules of society.

Beccaria,1764) is often regarded as the father of criminal law and in his book
” Crime and Punishment” , he stated that is the reparation that is necessitated
by a given society, by a person who has brought harm to that society. One of
the core principles of Beccaria was that of proportionality, and swiftness.
Beccaria argued that by nature, the motive for all human actions is utility in
the form of securing pleasure, and that by nature humans are greedy and selfish
and tend to make themselves the centre of world affairs. However when we look
at the riots of 2011 it goes against some of these fundamental principles which
give rise to legitimacy. The (Criminal Justice Act 2003), clearly states that
the five main guiding principles of sentencing are, punishment, crime
reduction, reform, rehabilitation of offenders, protection of the public and
the reparation of offenders. However during the riots what we saw was a
complete disregard of these principles and focused on the just desert theory.
Under the sentencing guidelines provision, offenders convicted of similar
crimes, should get similar punishments. Instead what we witnessed during the
2011 riots was that custodial sentences had gone up and those in remand had
increased even though the result of the trial could end up in a non-custodial
sentence.  This would all bring into
disrepute whether this is legitimate or not. The government might have been
using this a deterrent to others, but clearly research shows us that short
prison sentences have a very limited effect on re-offending, and that more than
half of those who are released often reoffend with a year of being released,
according to the (Home Office, 2017). (Frankie, Bierie, et al., 2010), argue
that one of the major factors is that of prison officers in trying to
administer legitimacy through responses that are procedurally fair to
prisoners. Research has shown how the conditions within a prison such as low
prison staff, overcrowding, the ill treatment of those from black and ethnic
minority backgrounds can break down the relationship between staff and
prisoner. Procedural justice, it can be attested is essential in making sure
that compliance is better than the use of force and is considered to be more
effective. Prisons can be regarded as institutions that are shut off from the
outside world and have their own set of values and norms. A prisoners
perceptions of procedural justice will look at how much trust they have in the
rules and regulations and how they are treated within the given closed society,
and this will affect how legitimacy for prison authority they have suggests
(Jackson et al.,2012).

argues that legitimacy can be regarded as something that is tangible, such as
property by the authority, which is then deferred to a given society who adhere
to the said rules and regulations set by the authority. (Weber, 1968)  argued that legitimacy was a property that
reflected the social values of any given society towards authority and
institutions, and that this came in three different forms, namely normative,
moral and ethical. However the instrumental model of legitimacy suggests that
the police maintain their legitimacy in regards to how they treat the public.

it can be suggested are put in place so that the offenders who seen as threats
can be identified and the relevant authorities can monitor and control the
threat as well as hold the threat for a specified period of time.
(Foucalt,1990), argued that in order to understand how the prison system works,
one has to be able to understand who the system benefits. As suggested earlier
prisons are there to serve an important role in society. Foucalt goes on to
argue that the upper ruling classes have created this ideology of fear and
delinquency which in turn maximises the panic of incarceration and in turn
gives absolute power to government agencies such as the police. It therefore
raises the question of how legitimacy comes into play.

social contract are what societies are led by and that we give up our natural
freedoms so that a society can uphold the laws and rules that govern a nation.

,1990) in his book Prisons and
Punishment, argues that the main reason that we have prisons in our society
is that they serve an important purpose and that they are there to benefit the
whole of society. Prisons can be seen as socially constructed by the ruling
classes as a way of controlling society and keeping the fear of authority
justified. The foundations of legitimacy, could be found in the works of (Hobbes,1679,Beccaria,1764OU1 ).
When trying to understand
legitimacy, it is important to also look at the idea of consent and social
contract. In his book Crime and punishment, (Beccaria, 1764) suggests that

this essay I will be arguing how the foundations of legitimacy are not in
support of incarcerating the vast numbers of individuals that have their basic
freedom taken away every year. It could be argued that the prison system is
having a crisis of legitimacy as it appears to be in conflict of what
legitimacy and procedural justice are about. The essay will also look at the
works of Jeremy Bentham, Cesare Beccaria, Tom Tyler and Bottoms & Tankabe
in relation to legitimacy and procedural justice.

To what extent does today’s prison
system suffer from a crisis of legitimacy?



Learning outcomes
and grading


1. Identify the problematic nature of common sense notions and
understandings relating to crime and deviance.

2. Show
the relationship between criminological argument and evidence.

3. Identify
the socially constructed nature of crime and deviance.

4. Begin to critically reflect upon the conflict between media representation and
criminological theory and research, relating to criminal and deviant groups.







Extensive knowledge and
understanding demonstrated.

Highly developed, integrated,
clearly articulated and appropriate understanding

Clearly and consistently
articulated appreciation demonstrated.

Well developed & clearly
articulated beginning to critical reflection


Very good knowledge, some areas more highly developed than

Consistent and accurate
application made.

Well developed and articulated

Consistent and accurate beginning
to critical reflection.


Good basic grasp of appropriate

Definite attempts to link argument to evidence.

Good basic awareness displayed.

A reasonable attempt at beginning
critical reflection.


A basic level of understanding and
knowledge demonstrated.

Some evidence of links

Some awareness apparent

Limited attempt to begin critical reflection


Criteria not met

Criteria not met

Criteria not met

Criteria not met



Signature…………………………………….                Grade……………             Agreed




1st Marker:
Helen Arnold……………………………………                  Grade





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MODULE: Penology

DATE DUE: 03/01/2018

ASSESSMENT: 2 000 essay