The Curious Mr Howard: Legendary Prison Reformer

The Curious Mr Howard: Legendary Prison Reformer

By: Tessa West (author)Hardback

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The name John Howard (1726-1790) is well-known as that of the man after whom the UK's oldest penal reform charity, the Howard League, is named. Tessa West's new book breaks fresh ground in looking at both Howard's immense legacy in terms of prison reform as well as his fascinating character and personal life. Based on extensive research it provides a vivid and intriguing picture of the man and his times which will be of interest to a wide range of readers interested in knowing what drove so singular a figure. John Howard's curiosity in prisons goes without saying, as his own writings show, including his iconic The State of the Prisons in England and Wales. As a self-appointed inspector of prisons - and in that sense the first to carry out such a task - Howard would knock on the door of penal establishments across the UK and in other countries - often unannounced or invited - where once inside he would observe, listen and make copious records of events behind prison walls. And he was a curious fellow altogether. Amongst the diverse epithets applied to him are: extraordinary, indefatigable, restless, benevolent, solid, selfless, charismatic, eccentric, obsessive, energetic, modest and above all singular. Forever concerned with minutiae, not without friends but lacking close social contacts or time for admiration, the workaholic Howard frequently travelled alone and in dangerous places for months on end. Permanently on the move and forever retracing his steps, he was equally at home in Russia, Germany, Holland and other countries as he was when carrying out his carefully planned routines in Bedford, Warrington, Cambridge or London. A perfectionist with a huge personal reputation he brought his influence, genius and philanthropy to bear wherever he went.

About Author

Tessa West has worked in prisons and on prison-related matters for many years. While head of a prison education department she was awarded a Cropwood Fellowship at the Institute of Criminology in Cambridge. Among other things, she worked for the United Nations Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice Department in Vienna and was an independent member of the Parole Board. In respect of The Curious Mr Howard she was given the Arthur Welton Award which enabled her to carry out research in Ukraine (where John Howard died). She is the author of Prisons of Promise (Waterside Press, 1997) and three novels.


Acknowledgements The Author Foreword Timeline Preface Introduction 1: Finding his way 2: The Young Adult 3: Domesticity at Cardington 4: Jack and Restlessness 5: On the Road 6: Home, Shrievalty and Prisons 7: Researching and Travelling 8: Howard in the House 9: The State of the Prisons 10: Foreign Prisons and Hospitals 11: Prisoners of War in England; Scotch and Irish prisons; Hulks on the Thames; Remarks on the gaol-fever; Conclusion 12: The Writer, Editor, Publisher and Superintendent 13: More about Jack, More prisons and More anecdotes 14: Lazarettos and the Plague 15: Back to Cardington 16: The Last Journey 17: The Funeral and Beyond 18: Tributes 19: The Legacy 20: A Last Look Bibliography Index

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9781904380733
  • Format: Hardback
  • ID: 9781904380733
  • ISBN10: 1904380735

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  • Saver Delivery: Yes
  • 1st Class Delivery: Yes
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