How Iron is the Iron Cage of New Penology? The Role of Human Agency in the Implementation of Criminal Justice Policy

Punishment & Society: The International Journal of Penology, Vol. 8, No. 3, pp. 313-340, 2006

29 Pages Posted: 22 Aug 2009 Last revised: 24 Nov 2011

Leonidas K. Cheliotis

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration

Date Written: April 13, 2009

Abstract

This article addresses the extent to which the concept of ‘new penology’ is helpful in understanding penal currents, particularly as they relate to the older paradigms of retribution and rehabilitation. In the light of theoretical, historical and empirical evidence, support is lent to the arguments: that the new penology thesis downplays the role of human agency at the level of implementing criminal justice policies; that it ignores the potentially positive aspects of managerialism; and that it misses the continuity between past and contemporary penal features. It is concluded that, despite its merits, new penology remains a hypothesis, rather than a realized penal rationale.

Keywords: actuarialism, human agency, managerialism, new penology, resistance

Suggested Citation

Cheliotis, Leonidas K., How Iron is the Iron Cage of New Penology? The Role of Human Agency in the Implementation of Criminal Justice Policy (April 13, 2009). Punishment & Society: The International Journal of Penology, Vol. 8, No. 3, pp. 313-340, 2006. Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=1377920

Leonidas K. Cheliotis (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration ( email )

Houghton Street
London, England WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

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