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NCJRS Abstract

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NCJ Number: 168129 Find in a Library
Title: Revolutionary Reform: Capitalist Development, Prison Reform, and Executive Power in Mexico (From Birth of the Penitentiary in Latin America: Essays on Criminology, Prison Reform, and Social Control, 1830-1940, P 169-193, 1996, Ricardo D. Salvatore and Carlos Aguirre, eds. - See NCJ-168123)
Author(s): R Buffington
Date Published: 1996
Page Count: 25
Sponsoring Agency: University of Texas Press
Austin, TX 78722
Sale Source: University of Texas Press
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Type: Issue Overview
Language: English
Country: United States of America
Annotation: This essay deals with the relationship between prison reform and the political and ideological debates from the Porfiriato to the Mexican Revolution.
Abstract: The essay demonstrates the centrality of the penitentiary for the construction of a national state and the search for political hegemony, showing the continuities in the discourse about prison and punishment between the two periods. These continuities find their rationale in the fact that both regimes, despite major differences in other respects, considered the state to be the major regulator of social life and were prepared to use the penitentiary as a metaphor for the political system. The penitentiary, promoted by both the Porfirian community and the congressmen of the 1917 Constitutional Convention, was conceived as a modern instrument for the control of crime but, above all, it was a powerful symbol of state power that promised legitimacy to each regime. In addition to the continuities, the essay also notes key differences between the two sets of policymakers. While the Porfirians stressed the need for political centralization, the revolutionaries at the 1917 convention were much more concerned with preventing the emergence of a new autocracy. Notes
Main Term(s): Corrections
Index Term(s): Correctional reform; Criminology; Cultural influences; Foreign criminal justice research; History of corrections; Latin America; Mexico; Penology; Political influences
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