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Free Content Psychosocial justice for students in custody

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Availability to quality education is significantly beneficial to the life prospects of young people. In particular, for young people caught up in the justice system, it is argued that involvement in education reduces risk of further criminality and improves a person’s prospects for future community engagement. This paper overviews a recent study undertaken in the Australian state of Victoria. The study worked with project partner, Parkville College, the government school operating inside the state’s two detention centres, to examine what supports and hinders education for students in custody. Amongst other purposes, education should be about the pursuit of justice and if accepted as an ontological opportunity, education can invite the pursuit of a particular kind of justice ‐ psychosocial justice. Subsequently, psychosocial theory applied to educational practice in youth detention is inextricably linked to issues concerning justice, both for how theory is invoked and ways in which practice is enacted. The paper first introduces the concept of psychosocial justice then hears from staff connected to Parkville College regarding issues and concerns related to their work. As shown, education for incarcerated young people, not just in Australia but internationally, is enhanced by contributions from psychosocial studies providing a means to pursuing justice informed by a politics of psychosocialism.
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Keywords: custody; education; relationality; students; youth justice

Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 2019

More about this publication?
  • The Journal of Psychosocial Studies publishes work that falls within the broad transdisciplinary area of Psychosocial Studies, defined by a commitment to understanding the significance of the links between internal and external worlds.

    Psychosocial Studies draws on a range of disciplines to explore the interactive relationships between self, culture and society. Whilst often focusing on affect and emotion it explores the complexities of subjectivity and experience as it is lived and shaped in different contexts and settings. This approach is defined by a commitment to exploration of the links between the internal and external worlds; both the deeply personal and profoundly social.

    We are interested in publishing papers that bring a psychosocial perspective that might help us understand a range of contemporary social phenomena. This might be work on family life, welfare practices, criminal justice issues, youth work, cultural products (such as film, art and literature).

    As the adopted journal of the Association for Psychosocial Studies (APS) we especially seek to promote work that is interdisciplinary and considers issues of practice. The Journal of Psychosocial Studies provides space for research and writing that crosses the traditional boundaries between disciplines in the social sciences, humanities and the arts. We also publish work that emerges from and reflects on practice (that might include for example: social work, education, law, business studies, psychotherapy, group analysis and counselling) that draws on these theoretical frames.

    The Journal provides both a supportive and an academically rigorous space for new and established researchers to disseminate ideas, and hence stimulate debate in the psychosocial field. We welcome submissions from across the globe. Our strong International Editorial Board ensures that the Journal of Psychosocial Studies provides a publishing platform that transcends international boundaries. All published academic articles undergo our thorough double-blind peer review process. Please see the instructions for authors to find out how to submit an article.

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