Female Correctional Subcultures: Resulting Institutional and Staff Management Challenges

Denise W. Huggins, University of Arkansas - Fayetteville

The literature on the sexual and non-sexual relationships among pseudofamily groups and dyads in woman's prisons indicate that these relationships cause many of the problems encountered by correctional staff. The staff's management styles and biases often create an atmosphere that leads the staff and other inmates to overreact to women who participate in these relationships. This frequently results in staff and non-involved inmates being drawn into the manipulation of those who are in these relationships which instigate bouts of jealousy, anger, and confrontation within the pseudofamilies/dyads. This paper offers insight into the pseudofamily units, dyads, inmates not involveds in either type of relationship, and correctional staff by describing the nature of these relationships and how various individuals within the prison setting cope with both the inferred and authentic problems these create.

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Updated 05/20/2006