Outline and evaluate explanations of institutional aggression:
The Importation Model claims that some people who enter prison do so already possessing certain characteristics (i.e values, attitudes and experiences) that predispose them toward interpersonal violence within prisons. Cheeseman (2003) said that said that men in prison have a certain way of behaving and that they apply that behaviour to that new institutional setting, leading to institutional aggression. Therefore according to this explanation of institutional aggression, interpersonal violence is not a product of the institution itself but rather of the characteristics of those violent individuals who enter such institutions. This is summarised by Toch (1997) who stated “All prisoners inherit their sub cultural sediments from the street corners that supply them with clients”. Statistics suggest that young inmates have a more difficult time adjusting to prison; therefore they are more likely to have confrontations with other inmates and with prison staff, and are more likely to view violence as an appropriate way to deal with conflicts within prison. Research in the USA has shown that Black inmates are more likely to be associated with interpersonal violence than White inmates. This model argues that this is due to the fact Black prisoners enter prison from impoverished communities with higher rates of violent crime. As a result they are more likely to bring into prison the cultural norms that condone their violent behaviour.