Punishment and Control in Historical Perspective by H. Johnston

By H. Johnston

This book advances present theoretical understandings of punishment and keep watch over in society, offering a severe research of associations, punishment and the legislations.

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He gave me two or three brandies. I left him at the Wellington and came home. He followed me home and when we got home we quarrelled. I took the gun out of the top drawer of the cabinet. I knew it was half cocked and I pulled it. 3 (emphasis added). [Donald was shot in the groin]. 4 Similarly, nurse Sheppard stated that when Ada sought medical help for Donald after the shooting, ‘her condition was very distressed and distraught’, explaining that: … she and her husband had been quarrelling and that they were always quarrelling.

We went to the Wellington this evening. My husband kept on remarking what nice legs a girl there had got until I couldn’t stick it any longer and I left in disgust and came back home. He came later and said he had decided to walk out on me at last and that he really meant it this time. I said ‘Donald Darling do you realise what you are doing’. He repeated that this was final and that he was going. I reached for the revolver and did not realise it was cocked. I held it towards him. 1 (emphasis added).

In doing so, I shall argue that a message is sent out to men as a category about their personal conduct and responsibilities within a heteropatriarchal social order which may also be regarded as a form of ‘social control’. This is not to say that men and women are equally socially controlled. As will become apparent, it is the gender-specific production and re-production of the male and female subject, and their place within the overall heteropatriarchal social order which is at issue. More specifically, with respect to the Ada Allen case analysed below: We need … to consider the ways in which law constructs and reconstructs masculinity and femininity, and maleness and femaleness, and contributes routinely to a common-sense perception of difference which sustains the social and sexual practices which feminism is attempting to challenge (Smart, 1995: 79).

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