Date of Award

Summer 2019

Degree Type

Masters Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Arts (MA)

School

Criminal Justice, Forensic Science, and Security

Committee Chair

Dr. William W. Johnson

Committee Chair School

Criminal Justice, Forensic Science, and Security

Committee Member 2

Dr. Joshua Hill

Committee Member 2 School

Criminal Justice, Forensic Science, and Security

Committee Member 3

Dr. Laura Gulledge

Committee Member 3 School

Criminal Justice, Forensic Science, and Security

Committee Member 4

Dr. Jennifer Lemacks

Committee Member 4 School

Kinesiology and Nutrition

Abstract

According to Garland (2001), the U.S. correctional system is a reflection of the culture of control that exists in American society. One way the correctional system exerts control is through food. This concept partnered with Foucault’s ideas about the evolution of punishment and the criminal justice system as an institution creates the theoretical foundation for food as a method of control in the correctional system.

Through quantitative and qualitative analysis, this study examined food as a method of control in three southern Mississippi jails in order to understand how food is a contested space for control between jail staff and inmates. After interviewing and surveying inmates and staff, the researcher was able to propose a model in which inmates and staff use food as a method of control, but mostly indirectly. Both inmates and staff use food in order to shape identity. The results of this research can be used to influence correctional food best practices.

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