Essay on The Effects of Gender on Prisoner Interactions

1464 Words 6 Pages
In the past prisoners, both male and females, were simply treated as slaves of the state. Wardens had the freedom and discretion to maintain prisons as they wanted. This meant there was no outside interference. That definition for prisoners was derived in the case Ruffin v. Commonwealth (1871). The Supreme Court decided that forfeiting liberties and personal rights were consequences of the crime committed. Prisoners were viewed as slaves. In addition, losing citizenship rights meant losing the ability to complain about living conditions (Peak, 2010). Women and men were subjected to horrible prison conditions in which the living conditions were fifthly, overcrowded and harsh. Often times they were beaten and sexual abused by male …show more content…
The reason is that females were considered to be good candidates for rehabilitation. The suggestion is that female offenders were viewed as less dangerous than male offenders. Overtime, gender has led to women being protected and punished. The earlier notion of women-centeredness of women’s prisons no longer exists. There is more emphasis on a criminal being a criminal. At the same time, males still suffer harsher penalties compared to females within the criminal justice system.
In prison, women are considered to be less violent than male inmate. This difference is not taken into account upon constructing prisons for female offenders. In fact, construction is based on the correctional model about men being violent. Each gender interacts within prisons differently as well. For instance, males form gangs within prisons. They act territorially and fight to maintain power. In addition, men are more likely to congregate by race. On the other hand, females look to form small families that are not racially specific. Women will fight due to jealousy. However, they are more likely to vent their hostility upon themselves through self mutilation. The way the prison is set up also creates a difference. Prisons for males dived prisoners via classification based on the dangerousness of the crime. In contrast women’s prisons generally allow incarcerated women to mix freely (Stuart von Wormer & Bartollas, 2011).