Scandinavian Penal History, Culture and Prison Practice: Embraced By the Welfare State?

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Peter Scharff Smith, Thomas Ugelvik
Springer, Jul 28, 2017 - Social Science - 540 pages
This book draws on historical and cross-disciplinary studies to critically examine penal practices in Scandinavia. The Nordic countries are often hailed by international observers as ‘model societies’, with egalitarian welfare policies, low rates of poverty, humane social policies and human rights oriented internal agendas. This book, however, paints a much more nuanced picture of the welfare policies, ideologies and social control in strong centralistic states. Based on extensive new empirical data, leading Nordic and international scholars discuss the relationship between prison conditions in Scandinavia and Scandinavian social policy more generally, and argue that it is not always liberating and constructive to be embraced by a powerful welfare state. This book is essential reading for researchers of state punishment in Scandinavia, and it is highly relevant for anyone interested in the ‘Nordic Model’ of social policy.


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Part I Introduction
Part II The Developmentof Scandinavian Prison Practice
From Remand to Release
Part IV The Principle of NormalisationTheory and Practice
Part V A View from the OutsideScandinavian Penal Practice Under Foreign Scrutiny
Part VI Conclusion

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About the author (2017)

Peter Scharff Smith is Professor of Sociology of Law at the University of Oslo, Norway.
Thomas Ugelvik is Professor of Criminology at the University of Oslo, Norway.

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