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– imprisonment. 192 Women and criminal justice In 2012, the Prison Reform Trust published a three-year strategy to reduce the imprisonment of women in the UK (Prison Reform Trust, 2012a) and, in June 2014, again called for a reduction in women’s imprisonment (Prison Reform Trust, 2014). In Scotland, similar calls were made (Burman, 2012; Scottish Commission, 2012), and Clinks published a similar message calling for a gender-responsive approach to sentencing (Clinks, 2012). The Howard League for Penal Reform has worked since the 1990s to reform penal policy for women

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follows, Chapter 7, positions Verity-Fee, Phoenix, Iris and Angel centre stage. Their poetry and creative writing pieces, together with extended biographies that were written in collaboration with them, add texture, nuance and complexity to the theoretical ideas and concepts we have outlined in this chapter. Thus, by foregrounding the voices of incarcerated women and their varied ‘lived experiences’, we are enriching theoretical approaches that explain women’s imprisonment in the UK as structural violence, patriarchal violence or both. Notes 1 https

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, Cambridge: Polity Press. Carlen , P. and Tombs , J. ( 2006 ) ‘Reconfigurations of penality: the ongoing case of the women’s imprisonment and reintegration industries’, Theoretical Criminology , 10(3): 337–60. Clarke , R. ( 2004 ) ‘ What works?’ for women who offend: a service user’s perspective: exploring the synthesis between what women want and what women get. Research Paper 2004 /04, London: The Griffins Society. Corston , J. ( 2007 ) The Corston Report: a review of women with particular vulnerabilities in the criminal justice system , London: Home

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Caregiver’s Perspective , Bristol: Policy Press. Brown , M. and Bloom , B. ( 2009 ) ‘Re-entry and renegotiating motherhood: maternal identity and success on parole’, Crime & Delinquency , 55(2): 313–36. Carlen , P. ( 1998 ) Sledgehammer: Women’s Imprisonment at the Millennium , Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan. Carlen , P., Hicks , J. , O ’Dwyer , J. , Christina , D . and Tchaikovsky , C. ( 1985 ) Criminal Women , Cambridge: Polity Press. Clarke , B. and Chadwick , K. ( 2018 ) ‘From troubled women to failing institutions: the necessary

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Gender Matters

Accounts of female offenders’ journeys into the criminal justice system are often silenced or marginalized.

Featuring a Foreword from Pat Carlen and inspired by her seminal book ‘Criminal Women’, this collection uses participatory, inclusive and narrative methodologies to highlight the lived experiences of women involved with the criminal justice system. It presents studies focused on drug use and supply, sex work, sexual exploitation and experiences of imprisonment.

Bringing together cutting-edge feminist research, this book exposes the intersecting oppressions and social control often central to women’s experiences of the justice system and offers invaluable insights for developing penal policies that account for the needs of women.

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(4): 1103–56. Pressman , S. ( 2003) ‘Feminist explanations for the feminization of poverty’, Journal of Economic Issues , 37(2): 353–61. Prison Reform Trust ( 2019) ‘Why focus on reducing women’s imprisonment?’, [online] Available at: http://www.prisonreformtrust.org.uk/Portals/0/Why%20Women%20England%20and%20Wales.pdf [Accessed 17 March 2020]. Quinlan , C. ( 2011 ) INSIDE: Ireland’s Women’s Prisons Past and Present , Dublin: Irish Academic Press. Rodermond , E. , Kruttschnitt , C. , Slotboom , A. and Bijleveld , C. ( 2016) ‘Female desistance

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Introduction The pains of imprisonment are well documented by researchers. As far back as 1862, depictions of women in prison were dominated by portrayals of weak and vulnerable individuals such as Mayhew’s (in Zedner, 1998 , p 298): ‘In them one sees the most hideous picture of all human weakness’. The pains of women’s imprisonment, looking at the contemporaneous and longitudinal (through the lens of largely negative) impact on their health and wellbeing, their family life, their mothering identity, stigma and relationships are rich areas of academic

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This chapter focuses on the stories of sixteen women who at the time of their interview were actively engaged in drug recovery in two UK women’s prisons. It will explore their journeys into drug use and crime, their experience of addiction and its associated problems and losses. The women’s priorities for their recovery and their plans for the future will also be discussed. The chapter begins with an overview of research on women involved in drugs and crime before moving on to focus on the women’s own narrative accounts.

The reasons women start using drugs are complex and often centre on coping with the physical and emotional pain caused by abuse or other childhood and adult trauma (Bartlett, 2007; NTA, 2010). Numerous studies report high rates of experiences of abuse among women involved in drugs and crime and directly link these experiences with subsequent substance use and criminal activity (Green et al, 2005; Golder et al, 2014; Kelly et al, 2014). For example, Golder et al (2014) found in their sample of 406 women on probation or parole: 70 per cent reported experiences of physical or sexual childhood abuse; 90 per cent adult interpersonal violence; and 72 per cent non-interpersonal adult violence.

Messina et al (2007) found higher rates of childhood adverse events (CAE) among women in their comparative sample of male and female prisoners – specifically in terms of emotional and physical neglect (40 per cent vs 20 per cent); physical abuse (29 per cent vs 20 per cent); and sexual abuse (39 per cent vs 9 per cent) (see also Grella et al, 2013).

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Selling or swapping sex for economic need was a theme in the lives of the women Carlen interviewed. It was often taken for granted as an ‘expectation’ and a form of survival. There are no official records on the number of women in prison who have sold sex (Ahearne, 2016) and indeed no official records on the numbers of women selling sex more generally in society. In this chapter, we draw upon interviews with women from one participatory research project we conducted in the UK. We explore their life trajectories and find that their narratives are ‘vivid chronicles of the times’ in which they live, including experiences of the criminal justice system (CJS) and leaving prison (Carlen et al, 1985). We argue that women’s narratives can point to future possible trajectories and modes of doing justice with women, working against the grain of what Hudson (2006) calls ‘white man’s justice’. The participatory research that underpins this chapter is, for us, an example of biographical research as ‘criminological imagination’ (Carlen, 2010) that enables us ‘to grasp history and biography and the relations between the two within society’ (Mills, 2000). In Criminal Women (1985: 162), the prison regime is described as being based around the will to ‘discipline, infantalize, feminize, medicalize and domesticate’ and in the final part of the chapter we reflect on the extent to which this relates to women who sell sex and their experiences of the CJS.

In what follows, we outline what we mean by a criminological imagination and we present women’s stories of selling or swapping sex as told to us and/or to their peers.

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In England and Wales, women in prison make up a minority of the total custodial population yet acts of self-harm are around five times more common among incarcerated women. Policymakers have introduced suicide prevention programmes in prisons (HM Prison Service, 2001) and, while there has been a multiagency effort to improve how acts of self-harm are documented across prisons, the accounts of why women in prison self-harm is yet to be fully addressed. This chapter will explore the motivations associated with self-harm for imprisoned women and what we can learn from their experiences. Drawing on the voices of women, the chapter will provide insight into the intra-personal and/or inter-personal motivations for self-harming in prison. The chapter will finish with a reflection of what has stayed the same and what has changed since Carlen et al’s (1985) original book in relation to self-harm.

Self-harm is a challenge for the criminal justice system (CJS) due to its associations with physical injury, psychology co-morbidity and increased lifetime suicide risk (Hawton et al, 2013). The conceptualisation and definition of what has been characterised as ‘self-harm’ remains problematic. A number of different terms and definitions are used in research, policy and practice spheres. Terms such as ‘attempted suicide’, ‘self-injury’, ‘deliberate self-injury’, ‘self-mutilation’, ‘suicidal gesture’, ‘abortive suicide’, ‘self-inflicted violence’ and ‘para-suicide’ are used interchangeably. Walker and Towl (2016) note how issues of confusion continue to remain by the use of multiple definitions.

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