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Date of Award


Access Type

Campus Access

Document type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Program


First Advisor

Joya Misra

Second Advisor

Andrew Papachristos

Third Advisor

Kristin Bumiller

Subject Categories

Criminology and Criminal Justice | Feminist, Gender, and Sexuality Studies | Organization Development


Drawing on two and a half years of participant observation (n=280 hours) and extended life history interviews with incarcerated fathers (n=49), this dissertation examines the relationship between masculinity, fatherhood, and the organization of the prison system. This dissertation examines the ways assumptions and practices centered in the dangerous masculinity of prisoners draw on larger historical and cultural patterns to reinforce the ways that the prison system contributes to the social control project of the criminal justice system as a whole. In particular, I focus on the raced and classed underpinnings of dangerous masculinity of the prisoner. This dissertation also considers the ways incarcerated men struggle to balance their understandings of masculinity and fatherhood within the confines of the prison. Focusing on incarcerated men's understanding of the ways manhood and fatherhood support and undermine one another as a set of practices within prison contributes both to research in prisons and also to the larger conversation about masculinity and fatherhood.