Page:Popular Science Monthly Volume 43.djvu/623

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With regard to employment for prisoners, all outdoor work is to be preferred; next come the works in straw, cord-making, broom-binding, typography, tailoring, terra-cotta molding, then last of all shoemaking and carpentering. To be absolutely avoided, because they open the way to new crimes, are such trades as blacksmiths, photographers, lithographers, and such like, wherever iron implements or chemicals must be utilized. Work must be proportioned to the strength of the prisoner; prison work should on no account be farmed out to contractors et pour cause, because these would naturally always protect the ablest men and not the most morally deserving. "Never impose work," says Lombroso; "let it be desired. The delinquent should ask for it, and having obtained it, it should never become for him a pretext for receiving greater privileges." The Elmira Reformatory, of which Lombroso speaks in the letter I have quoted, has, we know, served as a pattern to all penitentiaries in the United States, and has modified their methods. Mr. Brock way, its founder, who states that he imbibed all his ideas from Lombroso's Uomo Delinquente, started from this premise that the introduction of indefinite and unlimited punishment is necessary as the basis of a logical and efficacious moral system; that it is not enough to separate the congenital criminal and the occasional, the passionate, and instinctive, that to each one must be applied the cure that best suits him, as in a hospital each patient is treated in a particular manner. The physical treatment is directed toward the development of muscle, by means of douches, massage, gymnastics, and good diet. In the moral it aims at the strengthening of the will, teaching the prisoner self-control, and thus enabling him to hasten on his own liberation, which is granted as soon as he has proved himself to be worthy. Mr. Brockway divides the prisoners into three classes—good, moderate, and perverse; but from the last they can pass into the first through good behavior, love of work, and respect for the guardians. The work taught in Elmira is practical; the prisoner, as soon as he is liberated—and this, according to statistics, is very soon—will always find lucrative occupations. Self-respect once born within him, will go on increasing, unless he is a delinquent born, and here it is that Lombroso departs from Mr. Brockway; in that case he insists that every remedy will be vain. The criminal will eventually fall back, and only complete exile or death can save society from his disastrous operations. But in spite of this objection Lombroso holds that Mr. Brockway's system, subject to a few modifications, which would take us too long to examine in detail, is useful as far as it goes in the present incomplete and chaotic state of equity in which scientific laws and legal justice do not correspond in their actions. He holds that it is particularly to be commended for