If you are looking for some interesting books to read during your holiday. Don’t look any further an we recently added new books to the reading corner.


This book explores the concept of punishment: its meaning and significance, not least to those subject to it; its social, political and emotional contexts; its role in the criminal justice system; and the difficulties of bringing punishment to an end. It explores how levels of criminal punishment could and should be reduced, without compromising moral standards, public safety or the rights of victims of crime.

Core contents include:
Why punishment matters, the salience of emotions in its various discourses and the role of culture.

  • The politicisation of punishment and legitimacy.
  • The penal system, the prominence of the prison in research on punishment and the role of community sanctions.
  • The aims of punishment, its limits and the role of power.
  • The ethics of punishment and human rights.
  • Punishment and social order.

This book is essential reading for all criminologists, as well as students taking courses on punishment, penology, prisons and the criminal justice system.

Rob Canton is Professor in Community and Criminal Justice at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK.

For more information or to order the book, click here.

Probation and mental health

This collection of research and evaluation explores issues in mental health and probation across the globe. The volume offers insight into a wide range of interrelated topics that address the mental health and mental health needs of those under probation supervision. The chapters embrace a range of diverse mental health concerns. The underpinning assumption is that offenders should receive mental healthcare that is ‘equivalent’ to that received by the general population where this is appropriate. This overview is informed by perspectives from academics and practitioners based in England and the Republic of Ireland, and also includes the views of people with lived experience of the Criminal Justice System. Building upon and adding to the existing literature in this field, the book will be a valuable resource for academics and researchers as well as those training to work in, and currently working in, the criminal justice and mental health field, and would also be of interest to those working in related healthcare settings.


Charlie Brooker, honorary chair in the Department of Law and Criminology at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Coral Sirdifield, Senior Research Associate at the University of Lincoln.

(below written by Coral Sirdifield , edited by Coral Sirdifield and Professor Charlie Brooker – source: Russell Webster )
The last few years have drawn attention to mental health in society, the relationship between deprivation and health inequalities, and the need to improve mental health provision, particularly for socially excluded groups. Professor Charlie Brooker (Royal Holloway, University of London) and Dr Coral Sirdifield (University of Lincoln) present an edited collection of international research on mental health and probation. In this book they bring together a range of perspectives in this field including those of academics, people with lived experience of probation and those working in criminal justice settings.

The collection begins by examining what we know from research studies and evaluations about effective mental health interventions in probation. Brooker and Sirdifield present findings from systematic reviews on mental health, suicide and substance misuse in probation. Whilst the reviews highlight a lack of conclusive evidence around effective interventions, they also draw attention to some potentially promising approaches that may be worthy of further research.

Part two of the collection provides an introduction to what we know about the prevalence of mental health problems amongst people on probation, with chapters that should be of interest to commissioners and policy makers. Studies are presented from one English region (Brooker and Sirdifield) and Ireland (Power and McNally, CEP president). Together they evidence the complexity of need in the probation population and the need for services to be configured to meet such needs.

Part three shares findings from recent joint Inspectorate thematic reviews of individuals with mental health needs and disorders in the criminal justice system (Buckley, Singh and Moore), and substance misuse services and probation (Ball and Parker). These valuable studies demonstrate the shortage of appropriate mental health service provision and provide helpful recommendations for practical steps that can be taken by those in a range of professional roles to improve identification of and care for people on probation with mental health and/or substance misuse needs.

Part four focuses on psychological treatment. Written by professionals working in the field, the chapters in this section discuss an approach to psychological treatment and screening adopted in a Community Rehabilitation Company working in London (Fowler), new directions for suicide prevention in Approved Premises (Slade), and autism and offending behaviour (Bates). These chapters provide a contemporary view of probation practice and demonstrate some of the challenges involved in trying to engage people on probation with mental health support. The authors provide helpful practical suggestions for working with people with different types of needs.

Parts five and six consider probation and Covid-19 (Devitt, Coley, Lawrence and Musimbe-Rix) and methodological approaches including a lived experience perspective on enhancing the work of probation through co-production (Emma, Jason and Mullen), and researching the probation service response to mental health need (Denney and Sirdifield). These chapters should be helpful to anyone wishing to conduct research in this area and to those considering the benefits of co-production in probation through the introduction of things like peer mentor roles.
Finally, the concluding chapter synthesises the learning from the collection into a set of principles for ensuring positive mental health outcomes for people on probation.

Pe-order the book

release date: August 5th

Go to the reading corner.

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