A Sourcebook on Solitary Confinement

98 Pages Posted: 20 Nov 2012

See all articles by Sharon Shalev

Sharon Shalev

SolitaryConfinement.org; Centre for Criminology, Oxford University

Date Written: 2008


With the exception of the death penalty, solitary confinement is the most extreme penal sanction which may be legally imposed on prisoners. In recent years there has been an increase in the use of strict, and often prolonged, solitary confinement in prisons and other places of detention across the world. This is a worrying development with potentially harmful consequences not only for the individual concerned, but also for wider society.

The Sourcebook on solitary confinement provides a comprehensive single point of reference on solitary confinement, its documented health effects, and some of the professional, ethical and human rights guidelines and codes of practice relating to its use. It is hoped that the Sourcebook will encourage policy makers and prison managers to put in place safeguards and mechanisms to limit the use of solitary confinement and to mitigate its harmful consequences.

Keywords: solitary confinement, prison segregation, health effects of isolation, human rights law, medical ethics

Suggested Citation

Shalev, Sharon, A Sourcebook on Solitary Confinement (2008). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2177495 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.2177495

Centre for Criminology, Oxford University ( email )

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