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If We Build It They Will Come: Human Rights Violations and the Prison Industrial Complex Si on le construit, ils viendront: violations des droits de l'homme dans la création d'un complexe d'incarcération à usage industriel. Si la edificamos ocurrirán: las violaciones de derechos humanos y el negocio de las prisiones

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This paper utilizes the concept of the Prison Industrial Complex (PIC) in order to examine the complex configuration comprised of the US prison system, multi-national corporations, small private businesses and the inmate population in the social and political economy of the 21st century US. Utilizing data on the PIC we pose the question: What is the purpose of prison, the rehabilitation of the inmates or the exploitation of prison labor? Specifically we argue, using Wright's neo-Marxist theory, that the current system of incarceration in the US mimics the exploitation characteristic of the slave plantation economy of the southern US, ripe with human rights violations, the products and profits of which are exported daily through the expansion of global markets. Cet article s'interroge sur le concept de création d'un complexe industriel pénal (CIP) et examine la configuration compliquée du système pénitentiaire contemporain aux EtatsUnis, entre sociétés multinationales ou petites sociétés et la population des détenus. Utilisant des données du CIP nous demandons: Quel est le but des prisons – est-ce la réhabilitation des détenus ou l'exploitation par le travail des détenus en prison? Nous désapprouvons, en nous appuyant sur la théorie néo-Marxiste de Wright, que le système courant d'incarcération aux Etats-Unis semble reproduire le système des plantations du sud des Etats-Unis et de leur économie politique d'esclavage, qui inclut des violations des droits de l'homme dans le but de profiter de l'immense rentabilité collectée sur le dos des détenus. Tout comme les Etats-Unis sont devenus la nation la plus riche au monde en profitant du travail des esclaves, aujourd'hui les sociétés américaines assurent leur richesse en exploitant des prisonniers de droit commun, vulnérables, à majorité noire. Esta ponencia usa el concepto de Complejo Penal Industrial (PIC) para examinar la compleja configuración del sistema penal americano de hoy, compuesto por empresas multinacionales, empresas pequeñas y la población encarcelada. Utilizando datos sobre el PIC, planteamos la cuestión: ¿Cual es el propósito de las prisiones, la rehabilitación de los presos o su explotación laboral? Sostenemos, usando la teoría neo-marxista de Wright, que el actual sistema de encarcelamiento en los Estados Unidos reproduce la economía de la explotación de esclavos en el sur de los Estados Unidos, con violaciones de derechos humanos y un enorme beneficio producido a expensas de los prisioneros.

Affiliations: 1: Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, USA

10.1163/187219107X203603
/content/journals/10.1163/187219107x203603
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/content/journals/10.1163/187219107x203603
2007-06-01
2016-12-06

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