Researching the conditions of Ecuadorian prisons in relationship to natural disasters for my previous blog article, I asked many of my friends and contacts here about their opinion of the prison system. It was then that I realized how widespread incarceration was: generally everyone I spoke to had a close relative or acquaintance in prison, … More Drug Laws and Overcrowding in Ecuador: The story of a young man called Robin
18:58 hours on the 16th of April 2016. An earthquake with the magnitude of 7.8 on the Richter scale hits the coast of Ecuador. For over 40 seconds, the earth shakes, trembles. People who lived it describe it as if the earth has turned into the sea, with giant waves that make you unable to … More Prisons During Natural Disasters: What to do and how to prepare?
Two Dutch journalists recently visited Tocoron prison in Venezuela, a prison run by its prisoners with the guards left outside to merely guard the gates. And life inside is flourishing. While the country is overtaken by protests and a lack of adequate services, the prison shops offer more food than is available outside and even … More Prison Village Gone Bad: Dutch research article on Venezuelan prison
This week, both Dutch and international press are writing about a new initiative in Dutch prisons: inmates received the key to their own cell. The initiative is carried out in Arhnem, and has been met with critique and worries from prison staff. With the aim of increasing prisoners’ self-reliance, prisoners receive ownership of their cell’s … More Dutch Prison Gives Key to Inmates
The initial reason that led me to start this blog 6 months ago, was to share with you the results of my Master’s dissertation. I wanted to create a space where my work and ideas could be easily accessible to others and prevent it from collecting dust on my bookshelf. Having doven into the blog creation … More The World’s Most Humane Prison, in Theory
The Netherlands is in the process of closing 19 of its prisons. For one, because the number of prisoners has declined to such an extent that it left many prisons (half)empty. And two, for reasons of austerity closely linked to the ‘Masterplan‘: older and smaller prisons will be substitute for newly built and larger complexes. As a … More Panopticon Prison Haarlem: Turning the cupola inside out
What happens when you put 24 students in a prison setting, randomly assigning half to take up the role of prison guard and the other half the role of prisoner? You get Zimbardo’s famous Stanford Prison Experiment. What happens when an opinion maker judges a prison experiment without having stepped a foot inside … More Critiquing Critique: The Stanford Prison Experiment
A while ago, a friend of a friend stayed with me for a couple of days. She came from California and was looking for job opportunities in the Netherlands. Why did she come to the Netherlands, I asked her. Because of the prison system, she told me. She had heard it was the country with the … More Dutch Prisons: A masterplan of punishment
“I was sentenced to prison, but at the same time it was the only place I was free.” – Sara in Prison Sisters (2016) This week, I am visiting the International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam, one of my favourite film festivals. One of the documentaries that touched me the most was Prison Sisters by Nima Sarvestani. In … More Prison Sisters (movie review)
Google search the word ‘panopticon’ and you will find a large range of websites, videos, and blogs as diverse as the colours of the rainbow. The word seems to be living a life of its own and stretches from its core – a prison model – as far as a knitting blog (see a beautiful example below). … More Panopticon: What’s in the name?