The Effects Of Solitary Confinement On The Mental Health Field, Criminal Justice System, And Political Arena

2057 WordsApr 26, 20169 Pages
In recent years, the use of solitary confinement has become a topic of interest in the mental health field, criminal justice system, and political arena. Despite being deemed Constitutional by the Supreme Court, many mental health professionals are beginning to investigate the negative psychological effects of solitary confinement. Although there is growing concern regarding the humaneness of solitary confinement, a topic of interest that has yet to be explored in much detail is the relationship between theories of criminal behavior regarding aggression and solitary confinement. For the most part, inmates, regardless of whether or not they are in solitary confinement, are insufficiently socialized in prison. Given this lack of proper…show more content…
Next, I will give a brief overview of what solitary confinement is, who can be put in solitary confinement, and how solitary confinement is different from seclusion. Finally, I will explain the psychological effects of solitary confinement, specifically as they relate to aggression and violence. Given the current psychological research and political debate surrounding solitary confinement, I will ultimately conclude that solitary confinement not only has significant negative psychological effects, but it serves as a risk factor promoting aggressive tendencies in inmates. Theories of Criminal Behavior: Aggression and Violence Aggression is a natural part of human behavior, and can even be adaptive in certain situations. However, when aggression manifests itself in violent behaviors, it becomes problematic. Patterns of aggression change throughout childhood, adolescence, and early adulthood, and these changes usually differ between males and females (Loeber, 1997). Physical aggression is typically greatest early in life and decreases during adolescence, whereas more serious violence tends to increase with age, particularly during adolescence (Loeber, 1997). Despite the changes that occur in aggressive tendencies throughout childhood and adolescence, aggression is seen as a very stable trait, almost as stable as
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