The Politics of Abolition Revisited

Front Cover
Routledge, 2016 - Pressure groups - 338 pages

Originally published in 1974 and the recipient of the Denis Carroll Book Prize at the World Congress of the International Criminology Society in 1978, Thomas Mathiesen's The Politics of Abolition is a landmark text in critical criminology. In its examination of Scandinavian penal policy and call for the abolition of prisons, this book was enormously influential across Europe and beyond among criminologists, sociologists and legal scholars, as well as advocates of prisoners' rights.

Forty years on and in the context of mass incarceration in many parts of the world, this book remains relevant to a new generation of penal scholars. This new edition includes a new introduction from the author, as well as an afterword that collects contributions from leading criminologists and inmates from Germany, England, Norway and the United States to reflect on the development and current state of the academic literature on penal abolition.

This book will be suitable for academics and students of criminology and sociology, as well as those studying political science. It will also be of great interest to those who read the original book and are looking for new insights into an issue that is still as important and topical today as it was forty years ago.

Other editions - View all

About the author (2016)

Thomas Mathiesen earned his Ph.D. in Oslo in 1965 and was a full professor at the University of Oslo from 1972 until 2003. Thomas has been Professor Emeritus since 2003 and has given numerous guest lectures at universities and colleges in Europe, the US and Latin America. Professor Mathiesen was awarded the Denis Carroll Prize in 1978, was given an honorary doctors degree at Lund University in 2003 and was Co-founder of the Norwegian Association of Penal Reform (KROM) in 1968. Thomas is still active in the organization today. Professor Mathiesen has also published a number of books in various languages, including seven books in English, among which are Silently Silenced (2004), Prison on Trial (3rd ed. 2006) and Towards a Surveillant Society (2013).

Bibliographic information