1. There are distinct differences between Pennsylvania and Auburn, New York correction systems. To begin, the Pennsylvania correction system consists of, “the offenders and criminals were not morally contaminated, and they would be trained on how to commit crime by other prisoners” (Bosworth, 2002). Meanwhile, it is said that “those who are deemed as the offenders separate and silent, this system seemed as to be one of the most efficient approaches though there still existed errors here and there” (Bosworth, 2002). In other words, the Pennsylvania prison systems separates inmates from each other, so that they could focus on their repentance. Also, another important part of the Pennsylvania system is that it, “was responsible for the influence in penology for over a hundred years and it was the forerunner when it came to modern corrections” (Johnston, 1973). Now, on the other hand, the Auburn corrections system is referred to as a tier system from which there were, “varied levels of cells that were built above each other…the inmates were housed as per the offense category that they were convicted for, in categories that were varying from first time offenders to repeaters, murderers and thieves” (Roth, 2006). In addition, since the Auburn system working efforts produced income, their system were more cost effective than the Pennsylvania corrections system. This is a positive attribute to their correction systems because, “the inmates were less likely to find themselves running mad and it was easier to feed everyone when they were in groups” (Johnston, 1973). With that being said, the Auburn corrections system mainly differs from the Pennsylvania corrections system is that the Auburn system is most cost-effective and easier to maintain through work production than Pennsylvania due to the fact that Pennsylvania separates their inmates so harshly. Furthermore, based on my readings, I feel that the Auburn corrections system is more appropriate, for after all it is known that “Auburn picked up on the challenge of fixing the shortcomings that were being experienced in the Pennsylvania prison system and from the corrections they came up with the Auburn system” (Bosworth, 2002). Hence, Auburn is the most cost-effective, work productive, and socially acceptable option for correctional systems in comparison to that of Pennsylvania.
2. What’s the difference between the Pennsylvania system, and the Auburn system. To start out the Pennsylvania corrections system focused on more of a separate confinement system they would have there system set up in a way that inmates would always be held isolation, spending there time craft work or considering there transgressions. And that also prisoners should not be treated vengefully but she be convinced that though hard and selective forms of suffering they could change their lives. The Auburn system on the other hand runs more of a congregated system instead. This system also held prisoners in isolation at night, but during the day they were able to work with each other under certain set of rules with one of the including a rule of silence. This system created good working habits for the prisoners which also prevented recidivism than with rehabilitating prisoners characters. If I had to personally choose which system I thought is better I would pick the Auburn system. The reason why I would pick the system because I personally feel it helps prisoners the most with instilling them with positive work habits that they can take and use once they get out of prison or jail. Also many people found the Auburn system more acceptable and cost efficient and the Pennsylvania system.
3. The Pennsylvania and The New York (Auburn) Systems consist many differences when it comes to corrections systems. The first thought that came to my mind when I read about the Pennsylvania System was the Eastern State Penitentiary located in Philadelphia. It opened in 1829 and was described as separate confinement, meaning a penitentiary system developed in Pennsylvania in which each inmate was held in isolation from other inmates, with all activities, including craft work, carried on in the cells (Clear et. al., 2016). This is where the idea of cell blocks began. Along with the separate confinement measures, there were five principles that the Pennsylvania system focused on. These include (1) Prisoners would not be treated vengefully but should be convinced that through hard and selective forms of suffering they could change their lives; (2) Solitary confinement would prevent further corruption inside prison; (3) In isolation, offenders would reflect on their transgressions and repent; (4) Solitary confinement would be punishment because humans are by nature social beings; and (5) Solitary confinement would be economical because prisoners would not need long periods of time to repent; therefore, fewer keepers would be needed, and the costs of clothing would be lower (Clear et. al., 2016). However, solitary confinement was said to be and is still considered to be controversial due to the mental and physical health issues that arise from isolation. Because of this, separate confinement declined by the 1860s, when crowding required doubling up in each cell, yet it was not fully abolished in the state of Pennsylvania until 1913 (Clear et. al., 2016).The New York (Auburn) System differed from the Pennsylvania System in that it used a congregate system. A congregate system is a penitentiary system developed in Auburn, New York, in which inmates were held in isolation at night but worked with other prisoners during the day under a rule of silence (Clear et. al., 2016). While inmates were allowed out of isolation during daytime, they could not speak or even look at other inmates, thus creating an environment for no social interaction. Another important aspect that came about within Auburn Systems is the idea of the contract labor system. While inmates in Pennsylvania Systems worked in their cells, those in Auburn Systems had it a bit different. A contract labor system is a system under which inmates’ labor was sold on a contractual basis to private employers that provided the machinery and raw materials with which inmates made salable products in the institution (Clear et. al., 2016). This system became important and well-used throughout other systems as well. Adopted Auburn Systems seemed to be more concerned with instilling good work habits and thus preventing recidivism than with rehabilitating prisoners’ characters (Clear et. al., 2016).When debating both systems, I feel like the Auburn System was more appropriate. When coming to this conclusion, I read over Table 3.1 in our textbook. The idea of isolation from everyone really is not the best, especially considering the whole purpose of rehabilitating inmates in order to get them back into society. Isolation causes not only physical illness, but mental as well. On the other hand, the Auburn System’s main goal was to create redemption of the offender through the well-ordered routine of the prison (Clear et. al., 2016). I have done a lot of research on solitary confinement and isolation, and I believe that is just not the proper way to rehabilitate inmates, as it really focuses more on the idea of punishment. Of course, some crimes are unexplainable and just outright disgusting and those need to be punished. But the Pennsylvania System punished everyone by keeping inmates in their cells at all times through isolation and silence. Both systems have their flaws, however, I feel the Auburn System was more appropriate.
4. Both the Pennsylvania and Auburn (New York) systems are different. The Pennsylvania system was similar to England’s Penitentiary Act of 1779. “The 1790 law specified that an institution was to be established in which ‘solitary confinement to hard labour and a total abstinence from spirituous liquors will prove the most effectual means of reforming these unhappy creatures'” (Clear et al., 2016, 50). Personally I feel that individuals need social interaction in order to improve themselves. Solitary confinement is not a very good approach to effectively helping these individuals to improve their lives and to learn what they did wrong. There were many principles that the Pennsylvania system was based on. “As described by Robert Vaux, one of the original reformers, the Pennsylvania system was based on the following principles: 1) Prisoners would not be treated vengefully but should be convinced that through hard and selective forms of suffering they could change their lives. 2) Solitary confinement would prevent further corruption inside prison. 3) In isolation, offenders would reflect on their transgressions and repent. 4) Solitary confinement would be punishment because humans are by nature social beings. 5) Solitary confinement would be economical because prisoners would not need long periods of time to repent; therefore, fewer keepers would be needed, and the costs of clothing would be lower” (Clear et al., 2016, 50). The Auburn (New York) system was not much better. “In 1821 Elam Lynds was installed as Warden at Auburn. Instead of duplicating the complete isolation practiced in Pennsylvania, Lynds worked out a new congregate system of prison discipline whereby inmates were held in isolation at night but congregated in workshops during the day. The inmates were forbidden to talk or even to exchange glances while on the job or at meals” (Clear et al., 2016, 51). Later there was also another system put in place in Auburn. “Whereas inmates of the Pennsylvania penitentiaries worked in their cells, those in New York were employed in workshops both as therapy and as a way to finance the institution. Convict labor for profit through a contract labor system became an essential part of Auburn and other northeastern penitentiaries. Through a system of ‘free’ convict labor, the state negotiated contracts with manufacturers, which then delivered raw materials to the prison for conversion into finished goods. Wardens that adopted the New York (often called Auburn) system seemed to be more concerned with instilling good work habits and thus preventing recidivism (relapse into crime) than with rehabilitating prisoners’ characters” (Clear et al., 2016, 52). This new system I feel improved the New York system because prisoners were allowed to communicate with one another while learning a new skill. Personally, I feel that the New York system was more appropriate. Even though they were not paying the prisoners for their work the prisoners were essentially learning a new skill that could be used when they get out of prison and could possibly help them to get a job. The Pennsylvania system was just placing individuals in solitary confinement and not allowing individuals to talk to each other ever. I feel that is more detrimental and could possibly make them angry and more likely to commit another crime based on their anger.
5. There are similarities and differences between the two systems of Pennsylvania and Auburn (New York). The similarities are that they both have inmates in isolation. The difference is that the Pennsylvania system have the inmates isolated at all times. Meanwhile, the (New York) Auburn system, have the inmates separated at night, but during the day, the inmates are allowed to work together with other inmates on various projects. I believe that the system of Auburn is a better option. I feel it is important for the inmates (as long as they are behaving), to socialize and work witht others on various projects. I feel they should not be completely isolated at all times because when they are released back into socialization, they need to know how to work with others still, and continue to know how to mingle with people. Complete isolation can also greatly impact a person mentally, so not being completely alone at all times would be better for them mentally also.