Why Do People Experience In Prison

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While Dwayne Betts was incarcerated he suffered from many unpleasant experiences. The main things people experience in prison are: prisonization, the pains of imprisonment, total institution, and degradation ceremonies. Prisonization is basically how new inmates adapt to the norms, routine and culture of prison. Prisons are a microcosm of society with their own rules both formal and informal (norms). There is also a different set of values than on the outside. When you are locked up respect is valued over everything. Inmates who have been locked up for a long time are given respect and are usually left alone. On the opposite end of that spectrum new inmates are often harassed and bullied by others because they haven’t earned any respect. When …show more content…

Eventually Betts talks through the bars to the prisoner next to him but says he would never have talked to that kid on the outside. Thankfully Dwayne finds his salvation in literature. His mom brings him books and he falls in love with reading to pass the time. For the first time he can escape the total institutions he is kept in. A total institution has control over every aspect of your life and makes you feel worthless. They isolate you in a cell and depersonalize you. Instead of a name you are issued an inmate number. You are forced to be on the prisons schedule for everything. You also lose your style by being given a uniform. Finally you lose sense of time from being in a prison with no sunshine or view of outside most of the time. When Dwayne first gets transferred he tries flirting with the girl who checks him in but he realizes she only wants his inmate number and has no respect for him. The final aspect of the total institution is degradation. This goes along with Betts being denied a shower and mattress so he feels less self worth. Inmates are also forced to strip and stand in front of all the other inmates to get sprayed with lice powder when they arrive to degrade

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