chapter  1
The prisoner as a zoon politikon
BySusan Easton
Pages 16

This introduction presents an overview of the key concepts discussed in the subsequent chapters of this book. The book considers the prison as a site of political protest, and discusses the quest for citizenship and the denial or negation of citizenship in prison. It examines the discovery of politics in prison and the role of the prison in increasing political awareness. The book also discusses the treatment of political prisoners. Imprisonment has been used as a means of silencing political opposition in the twentieth century. The book considers the perception of the function and role of the prison within political theory with reference to Marxist and anarchist theory, as well as their differing attitudes towards prisoners. It describes the prisoner as a political problem for politicians, who negotiate pressures from the media and the public when addressing prisoners' demands. The book explores how politicians and the public view prisoners, as well as the media's treatment of prisoners' rights claims.