Emotion and performance: prison officers and the presentation of self in prisons

Crawley, EM 2004, 'Emotion and performance: prison officers and the presentation of self in prisons' , Punishment & Society, 6 (4) , pp. 411-427.

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This article explores how prison officers manage and perform emotion on a day-to-day basis. Although the performance of emotion is invariably highlighted when things ‘go wrong’ in prison - perhaps particularly during prison disturbances - the emotional life of prisons at an everyday level has received much less attention. Moreover, although the sociology of the prison has acknowledged the impact of prison on the emotional lives of prisoners there has been much less interest in the emotional impact of the prison on its uniformed staff. This article focuses on how prison officers’ emotions are structured and performed on a daily basis. Prisons are emotional places, but like all organizations, they have their own ‘rules’ about the kinds of emotions it is appropriate for prison officers to express (and indeed feel) at work. In consequence, working in prisons demands a performative attitude on the part of staff, an (often significant) engagement in emotion-work and, relatedly, the employment of various emotion-work strategies.

Item Type: Article
Themes: Subjects / Themes > H Social Sciences > HN Social history and conditions. Social problems. Social reform
Subjects / Themes > B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Subjects / Themes > K Law > K Law (General)
Subjects outside of the University Themes
Schools: Schools > School of Health and Society
Schools > School of Health and Society > Centre for Applied Research in Health, Welfare and Policy
Journal or Publication Title: Punishment & Society
Publisher: Sage Publications
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 14624745
Depositing User: H Kenna
Date Deposited: 12 Jan 2009 11:33
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2022 07:54
URI: https://usir.salford.ac.uk/id/eprint/1030

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