Charles Dickens ' The Prison System

1131 Words May 5th, 2015 5 Pages
Charles Dickens visited the United States in 1842, were he witnessed solitary confinement in Eastern State Penitentiary just outside Philadelphia. Dickens viewpoints on the prison system in America is that he “persuaded that those who devised this system of Prison Discipline, and those who benevolent gentlemen who carry execution, do no know what it is that they are doing”. The lets the audience know what Dickens believes to be the negative part of the Prison Discipline. Dickens states that not many men are capable of enduring long period of agony and torture. The prison system to Dickens led him to be convinced that “There is a depth of terrible endurance in it which none but the sufferers themselves can fathom, and which no man has the right to inflict upon his fellow creatures”. This lets us conclude that Dickens’s assessment toward the Prisons has a more negative aspect. To support his claims of why the prisons have a negative aspect is seen through the numerous prisoners, he visited during his tour of the American prisons. He included an individual who was about to be released after two years in solitary confinement. Dickens reaction toward the man was that he felt his “Heart bled for him; and when the tears rolled down his checks…to ask, with his trembling hands nervously clutching…whether there was hope of his dismal sentence being commuted, the spectacle was really too painful to witness”. Dickens states that “I hold this slow and daily tampering with the mysteries…
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