Pentonville Prison

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  • Three examples of how pentonville prison supported the separate system
    • Pentonville Prison
      • Wings housed dozens of individual cells and staff quarters. Walls were very thick to prevent prisoners talking to each other
      • Areas where prisoners were sent for fresh air and exercise. They were masked to prevent communication
      • Each cells was 4x2 m
      • Small barred window, wash basin, loom for working
        • Prisoners undertook monotonous and repetitive work
      • Reasons for seperate system
        • For rehab:Solitude was thought to be the best way to provide prisoners opportunity to reflect on their crimes, turn to religion and therefore reform. Cells provided everything they needed so they didn't have to leave
        • For retribution: the isolation and boredom made criminal pay for their crime
        • Deterrent: Serious punishment and therefore deterrent for others.
    • Strengths/Weaknesses
      • Compared to previous system,it was clean and far less disease
      • Many believed it was just adequate- harsh but not overly so
      • Continuous isolation led to mental illness and high suicide rates
      • No education or new skills learnt for prisoners to use once released


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