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'I am the person now I was always meant to be': identity reconstruction and narrative reframing in therapeutic community prisons

Stevens, Alisa 2012. 'I am the person now I was always meant to be': identity reconstruction and narrative reframing in therapeutic community prisons. Criminology and Criminal Justice 12 (5) , pp. 527-547. 10.1177/1748895811432958

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Abstract

Drawing upon semi-ethnographic research, this article explores desistance in process among serious offenders residing in democratic therapeutic communities. It is argued that offender rehabilitation in therapeutic communities involves a process of purposive and agentic reconstruction of identity and narrative reframing, so that a ‘new’ and ‘better’ person emerges whose attitudes and behaviours cohere with long-term desistance from crime. This is possible because the prison-based therapeutic community, with its commitment to a radically ‘different’ culture and mode of rehabilitation, socially enables, produces and reinforces the emergence of someone ‘different’. The article therefore develops existing understandings of change in forensic therapeutic communities, and reaffirms theories of desistance which emphasize the importance of pro-social changes to the offender’s personal identity and self-narrative.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Social Sciences (Includes Criminology and Education)
Publisher: SAGE Publications (UK and US)
ISSN: 1748-8958
Last Modified: 04 Jun 2018 13:31
URI: http://orca.cf.ac.uk/id/eprint/110841

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