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Illich (Via Cayley) on Prisons

13 Pages Posted: 18 Oct 2012 Last revised: 26 Oct 2012

Giovanna Shay

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Date Written: 2012


This Article considers whether, more than a dozen years after publication of Cayley’s book, "The Expanding Prison: The Crisis in Crime and Punishment and the Search for Alternatives," Illich’s theories help us to make sense of America’s “prison-industrial complex.” The Author concludes that our current situation reflects in part the dynamics of his theory of “counterproductivity,” but that Illich did not take sufficient account of the salience of race and class in American criminal punishment.

Keywords: Ivan Illich, criminal punishment, incarceration, prisons, prison system, racial subordination

Suggested Citation

Shay, Giovanna, Illich (Via Cayley) on Prisons (2012). Western New England Law Review, Vol. 34, p. 351, 2012; Western New England University School of Law Legal Studies Research Paper No. 12-17. Available at SSRN:

Giovanna Shay (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

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