The Open UniversitySkip to content


Rowe, Abigail (2007). Bifurcation. In: Jewkes, Yvonne and Bennett, Jamie eds. Dictionary of Prisons and Punishment. Cullompton: Willan, pp. 23–24.

Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


Coined by Anthony Bottoms in 1977, the term 'bifurcation' refers to the differentiation between penalties for serious and minor offences. While prison sentences for serious criminals lengthen, the range of non-custodial penalties for minor offenders grows. This allows governments to control prison populations, while still being seen to protect society from serious and persistent offenders

Item Type: Book Chapter
Copyright Holders: 2007 Willan Publishing
ISBN: 1-84392-291-6, 978-1-84392-291-9
Keywords: Prisons; punishment; judicial sentencing
Academic Unit/Department: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > History, Religious Studies, Sociology, Social Policy and Criminology
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Interdisciplinary Research Centre: Centre for Citizenship, Identities and Governance (CCIG)
Harm and Evidence Research Collaborative (HERC)
Item ID: 18933
Depositing User: Abigail Rowe
Date Deposited: 16 Nov 2009 12:31
Last Modified: 04 Oct 2016 10:29
Share this page:

▼ Automated document suggestions from open access sources

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   + 44 (0)870 333 4340