Behind bars : Latino/as and prison in the United States by Suzanne Oboler; Palgrave Connect (Online service)

By Suzanne Oboler; Palgrave Connect (Online service)

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2006, 84) make clear that both national and local-level findings . . turn conventional wisdom on its head and present a challenge to criminological theory. -born generations, and over time in the United States among the foreign born—exactly the opposite of what is typically assumed. Paradoxically, incarceration rates are lowest among immigrant young men, even among the least educated, but they increase sharply by the second generation, especially among the least educated—evidence of downward assimilation that parallels the patterns observed for native minorities.

Dorfman and Schiraldi show that media coverage has tended to present an exaggerated, unbalanced picture of crime: “while Blacks and Hispanics were overrepresented as violent offenders, Whites were underrepresented as violent offenders on the evening news” (15). Bias in the criminal justice system ostensibly correlates with high rates of incarceration among Latino/a youth (Villarruel et al. 2002; Walker et al. 2004). National data reveal that Latino/a youth are charged with violent offenses at five times the rate of white youth and serve longer sentences than white youth—as much as 143 days longer for violent crimes (Villarruel et al.

Westport, CT: Greenwood Press. 2 Pursuant to Deportation Latinos and Immigrant Detention David Manuel Hernández Increasingly, the immigration system functions—like the criminal justice system— to socially control through confinement in secure, disciplinary facilities the unpopular and the powerless, which in this case are undocumented people of color. —Teresa A. Miller (2002, 216) T his essay explores the contemporary terrain of Latino immigrant detention outside of the shadow cast by the events of September 11, 2001,1 and within the context of a larger genealogy of Latino detention.

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