Punishing the Poor:
The Neoliberal Government of Social Insecurity
by Loïc Wacquant
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The world's largest jail is the Twin Towers Correctional Facility of Los Angeles, which occupies two peach-colored structures in the center of the city. Within those walls are two gymnasiums, kitchens capable of serving seventeen thousand meals a day, medical and mental-health wards, and, of course, the inmates' quarters—which are straight out of Michel Foucault's darker imaginings, heptagons with a single security guard in the middle surveying ninety-six cells at once through glass doors and with video cameras. Five stories high, the jail connects its floors via an enclosed yard area with a basketball hoop; a small wire cage provides a recreational area for those prisoners who need to be kept apart from the rest. Telephone banks allow for what one nurse calls an "umbilical cord to the outside world."
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