The View from Elsewhere: Scandinavian Penal Practices and International Critique

26 Pages Posted: 8 Jan 2018

See all articles by Malcolm Langford

Malcolm Langford

University of Oslo, Faculty of Law, Department of Public and International Law

Aled Dilwyn Fisher

University of Oslo - Department of Public and International Law

Johan Karlsson Schaffer

University of Gothenburg - School of Global Studies; University of Oslo - Faculty of Law

Frida Paréus

University of Oslo - Norwegian Centre for Human Rights

Date Written: January 4, 2018

Abstract

While the Scandinavian model of detention has been favorably received in comparative criminology, its reception in the international human rights community has been ambiguous. Initial reviews by international bodies of Scandinavian practices were positive: “models to which most other countries should aspire’. However, an increasing chorus of critique of particular detention practices from UN and Council of Europe human rights has clouded the picture. These negative appraisals deserve consideration. This chapter describes the evaluations of Scandinavian detention and punishment practices by UN bodies and provides a comparative analysis by contrasting them with reviews of four other Western European states. The chapter also argues that causal explanations based on the welfare state are important but need to be balanced by theories which foreground politics and the interplay between agency and structure.

Keywords: Detention, Concluding Observations, United Nations Treaty Bodies, Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Committee Against Torture, European Committee for the Prevention of Torture, Monitoring

Suggested Citation

Langford, Malcolm and Fisher, Aled Dilwyn and Karlsson Schaffer, Johan and Paréus, Frida, The View from Elsewhere: Scandinavian Penal Practices and International Critique (January 4, 2018). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3096442 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3096442

Malcolm Langford

University of Oslo, Faculty of Law, Department of Public and International Law ( email )

P.O. Box 6706 St. Olavs plass
N-0130 Oslo
Norway

Aled Dilwyn Fisher

University of Oslo - Department of Public and International Law ( email )

P.O. Box 6706 St. Olavs plass
N-0130 Oslo
Norway

HOME PAGE: http://www.jus.uio.no/ior/english/people/aca/aleddf/index.html

Johan Karlsson Schaffer (Contact Author)

University of Gothenburg - School of Global Studies ( email )

POB 700
Gothenburg, SE 40530
Sweden

University of Oslo - Faculty of Law ( email )

PO Box 6706 St Olavsplass
Oslo, 0130
Norway

Frida Paréus

University of Oslo - Norwegian Centre for Human Rights ( email )

Oslo, 0130
Norway

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