CORPORAL PUNISHMENT WITH CONFINEMENT

Topics: Prison, Capitalism, 19th century Pages: 1 (267 words) Published: March 16, 2014
CORPORAL PUNISHMENT WITH CONFINEMENT
Private enterprise is no stranger to the American prison. When the United States replaced corporal punishment with confinement as the primary punishment for criminals in the early nineteenth century, the private sector was the most frequent employer of convict labor. Prisoners were typically either leased to private companies who set up shop in the prison or used by prison officials to produce finished goods for a manufacturer who supplied the raw materials to the prison. The former arrangement was called the contract system, while latter came to be known as the piece-price system. In both instances, a private company paid the prison a fee for the use of prison labor, which was used to partially offset the expense of operating the prison. Blatant exploitation of inmates sometimes developed as a consequence of these systems. Opposition to the use of is in labor from rival manufacturers and from the growing organized labor movement began to emerge in the latter part of the 19th century as more and more prisoners were put to work from the private sector. Opposition reached a peak during The Great Depression when Congress passed a series of laws designed to prop it the movement of prison -made goods in inter-state commerce, thus insuring that these products would not compete with those made by outside labor. Many state legislatures followed suit, forbidding the open market sales are importation of prison-made good within their borders and effectively barring the private sector from the prison. Has a consequence, prison-based manufacturing operations became state-owned and operated businesses, selling goods in a highly restricted market
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