The Prison Industrial Complex ( Tabibi )

965 Words Nov 10th, 2015 4 Pages
Question 1. According to Angela Davis (2003a), social historian Mike Davis was the first to coin the term prison industrial complex, in his research of the California penal system in the 1990s. The prison industrial complex refers to the coinciding relationship between corporations, government, correctional communities, and their collective economic interest in prison expansion and high rates of incarceration (Davis, 2003a). That is, each of these components benefit economically from perpetuating the notion that increasing crime rates are the causation for prison expansion. However, scholars and activists contest this belief, stating that crime rates are decreasing, and that prison expansion is done to increase profits through imprisonment (Davis, 2003a). In this model, criminal justice policy, crime control and the bodies of the marginalized, are organized and managed using a business philosophy focused solely of profitability. The term prison industrial complex is a replica of the military industrial complex (Tabibi, 2015a). Both refer to their respective industry as providing massive amounts of revenue in the American economy. To provide perspective and context to the amount of money produced by the prison industry in the United States, the film Corrections (2001) by Hunt, cites the amount as being upwards of forty billion dollars. Corporations, elected officials, and government agents, all have an invested interest in the expansion of the prison system (Davis, 2003a).…
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