On the sociology of prisons

“In the social hierarchy of prison inmates, mob kingpins, accomplished bank robbers, and cop killers tend to get the most respect. Convicts who have committed crimes against children, especially sexual abuse, are hated, harassed, and abused. Many inmates refer to molesters as “dirty” prisoners, and some insist that assaulting or killing them represents a service to society. But a convict’s crime plays only a small role in his social status and safety. Most jailhouse assaults happen because the victim violated prison norms, not because of the crime he committed on the outside. Those who steal tobacco, disrespect the members of an opposing gang, or snitch are in for a much rougher ride than the average molester.”

Are Child Molesters Really the Most Hated People in Prison? By Brian Palmer



Something for the geography nerds

An enclave is a piece of sovereign territory (that may or may not be part of country X), wholly enclosed by country Y. For example, the Vatican is an enclave within Italy, even though it is not the dependence of a third country. Yet Monaco is not an enclave within France, because it also borders the sea.

An exclave is a piece of sovereign territory that is separated from its “mainland” (country X), possibly but not necessarily by country Y. SoLesotho, entirely surrounded by South Africa, is not an exclave, because it is sovereign and does not “belong” to a third country. But Llivia, a Spanish village north of the Pyrennees, is an exclave of Spain (as well as being an enclave within France). Ceuta and Melilla, tiny Spanish territories on the Moroccan coast, are exclaves of Spain, even though they sit on the Mediterranean Sea.

So even if both definitions sound similar, their point of view is opposite: enclaves imply total encirclement by country Y, exclaves imply non-contiguity with country X.

An Apology of Enclaves

Interesting throughout