Visiting professor addresses prison radicalization, terrorism
Mark Hamm, professor of criminology at Indiana State University, spoke to students and faculty Thursday. Photo courtesy of Indiana State University
Mark Hamm, Professor of Criminology at Indiana State University, admits that his academic interest has narrowed significantly over the years.
"I'm interested in people who were not terrorists when they went to prison, but were terrorists when they got out of prison," he said.
Students and faculty engaged in discussion in the Julian auditorium yesterday afternoon, facilitated by the Prindle Institute for Ethics, following a lecture by Hamm entitled "Prisoner Radicalization."
Cas Mudde, associate professor of Political Science at DePauw, helped coordinate Hamm's visit and was eager for him to speak.
"He is one of the few people who actually does research on things on the edge by talking to people," he said. "He offers insight that most students at DePauw wouldn't actually know about."
Hamm said the focus of his lecture would be on radicalization within prisons in U.S. and Britain. The US Department of Justice defines radicalization as the process by which prisoners adopt extreme views, including beliefs that violent measures must be taken for political or religious purposes.
Hamm presented research on the topic based on a study he completed between 2005-2007. While he researched 30 prisons, he chose to focus on research done at Folsom Prison, a maximum-security prison located 30 miles from Sacramento, Calif.
Today, inmates are triple bunked by race. Though the institution was has a capacity of about 1,800, there were more than 4,400 in the facility at the time Hamm conducted his study.
"Maximum security is more likely to produce radicalized prisoners," said Hamm. "They're basically living in a media stone age. Overcrowding is at the basis of everything."
Hamm also noted that in overcrowded maximum-security prisons' yards are more politically charged. Increased violence and gang activity are also attributed to severe overcrowding.
"The conditions of incarceration matter," said Hamm. "I didn't necessarily find radicalization to be a problem in well-managed, under-crowded, well-staffed institutions."
Understaffed institutions are not able to offer specialized support for every inmate.
"Religion is sort of the last outpost," Hamm said. "There's no more work, there's no more rehabilitation, there's no more treatment. Often times they are seductive, millenarian, apocalyptic, end of the world religious orientations."
Hamm concluded the lecture by outlining five steps he deems necessary for de-radicalization: acknowledge the problem where it exists, close Guantanamo, improve information management on religion, reduce overcrowding, and support self-help programs by inmates in prison for life.
Get Top Stories Delivered Weekly
From Around the Web
More The DePauw News Articles
Recent The DePauw News Articles
Discuss This Article
MOST POPULAR THE DEPAUW
GET TOP STORIES DELIVERED WEEKLY
FOLLOW OUR NEWSPAPER
LATEST THE DEPAUW NEWS
- LETTER: D3TV and The Source on social issues
- Volume 163, Issue 24
- Cheers, tears and jeers: Fall 2014
- DePauw University flower-ins to change due to Title IX
- Peeler Art Center hosts student performance
- DePauw Student Government passes 11 pieces of legislation this semester
- DePauw University nature park hosts first annual Reindeer Run/Walk 5K
RECENT THE DEPAUW CLASSIFIEDS
FROM AROUND THE WEB
- Popping the Question Over the Holidays? What Every Guy...
- Helping Golfers Stay in the Swing With Chiropractic Care
- Conserve Energy This Winter by Choosing the Right Windows
- ACA Marketplace Complicates Tax Returns -- May Delay 2015...
- Gifts That Wow, and What They Say About You
- Millennial Travel Is on the Rise
- Taking Care on and off the Sports Field
- Are You a Candidate for Chiropractic Care?
- Worried About Ebola? What's Keeping You Safe at the...
- The Most Dangerous Time of the Year? Safety Tips for the...
COLLEGE PRESS RELEASES
- NEEBO COLLEGE TEXTBOOK SAVINGS TIP: SELL EARLY, BUY EARLY AND SAVE BIG
- Draper University's Tim Draper Hosts YouNoodle Live Featuring Student Entrepreneurs From Around The World
- NATIONAL SURVEY REVEALS CONFLICTED MINDSET OF COLLEGE STUDENTS ABOUT ADHD PRESCRIPTION STIMULANT MISUSE, ABUSE AND DIVERSION
- 7 Tips to Fuel for Finals
- LINE Webtoon Launches Challenge League, a New Discovery Feature for Webcomic Creators and Aspiring Artists