Mass Incarceration and Its “Causes”
DOI link for Mass Incarceration and Its “Causes”
Mass Incarceration and Its “Causes” book
Chapter 1 explains how dramatically the U.S. incarceration rate has quintupled over the last several decades, starting in the late 1970s. This has been the subject of many articles in the popular press and shows just how extreme our incarceration rate is compared to other Western countries. What are the “causes” of the rise? The chapter builds on the work of others to show that the usual explanations—for example, the war on drugs, the rise of our crime rate, and harsh sentencing statutes—are wrong or, at least, incomplete to explain our incarceration. We have to look elsewhere including at the system of criminal procedure built by the Court over the last fifty years.