Mass incarceration in America: A social problem
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This Research project examines the phenomenon called mass incarceration, and attempts to answer the question, is mass incarceration a social problem? In other words, has mass incarceration been socially constructed? The author hypothesizes that mass incarceration has been socially constructed across several contexts. The methodology used within this project is a hybrid of extensive literature review and content analysis. This research project crosses the boundaries of several important disciplines such as criminology and criminal justice, sociology, law and political science, and mass media communications. In proving that mass incarceration is a social problem, this research explores both its origin and nature. In doing so, the author decontextualizes mass incarceration into four major milieus necessary in order to fully grasp the existence of such a phenomenon, for example, the antecedents of moral panic, the War on Drugs as a moral panic, the infrastructure of mass incarceration, and the maintenance of the infrastructure. The significance of this project is that it brings forth an understanding of mass incarceration in America as a social problem.