Trauma Is A Form Of Punishment

913 WordsApr 22, 20154 Pages
Trauma is present in many currently incarcerated prisoners caused by being subjected to prolonged incarceration in an environment that is used as a form of punishment. “Trauma is an event in which there is physical harm, the self is wounded, or when a person who directly experiences, witnesses, or learns about a violent event is damaged by it” (DeVeaux, 2013). In simpler terms, trauma is an emotional response to a terrible event. Symptoms of trauma may be more prevalent in prisoners detained in solitary confinement for a lengthy amount of time and prisoners who are the victim and or witness of severe attacks and sexual assaults. Solitary confinement began in the United States in the 1800’s as a progressive movement to see if isolation could reform inmates. The practice was later abandoned when it was discovered that isolation did not reform prisoners, instead they “lost their minds.” However, solitary confinement reemerged in the 1980’s as a means to stamp out prison violence (Edge, 2014). The documentary on solitary confinement called Frontline: Locked Up in America: Solitary Nation, features an inmate who says “Monsters! This is what they create in here: monsters. And then they drop you into society and tell you go ahead, be a good boy.” He goes on to further say “You can’t conduct yourself like a human being when they treat you like an animal.” Another inmate states “This place is like an insane asylum” (Edge, 2014). The solitary unit is the prison within the prison. A
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