‘Who’s the Daddy?’ – ideas about fathers from a young men’s prison

Earle, Rod (2012). ‘Who’s the Daddy?’ – ideas about fathers from a young men’s prison. The Howard Journal of Criminal Justice, 51(4) pp. 387–399.

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-2311.2012.00722.x


Drawing from an ethnographically-informed study of men’s identities and social relations in prison, this article explores the ways in which ideas about fatherhood are institutionally deployed and personally experienced. Based on interviews and observational data in a young offender institution (YOI) for 18- to 21-year-old men, the article considers young men’s orientations toward being a father and their participation in parenting classes and a ‘Fathers Inside’ group. Four vignettes are constructed to present an account of some of the issues surrounding men’s experience of prison, being a man and a father, researching men in prison and gender regimes in which fathers are being rediscovered and reinvented.

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