BUXTON, THOMAS FOWELL. - An Inquiry, Whether Crime and Misery are Produced or Prevented, by Our Present System of Prison Discipline. Illustrated by descriptions ... sixth edition.
London, for John & Arthur Arch &c. 1818. 12mo, uncut in original boards (spine chipped); viii,184pp, 4pp publisher's adverts. A little browning, a few spots; quite a good copy with the bookplate of Robert Dundas, Viscount Melville, administrator, politician, statesman &c who gave his name to several spots around the world including two in Australia. ¶ Six editions of this inflammatory little book appeared in 1818, this being the last of course. Much of its power comes from the fact that the descriptions of all prisons (with the exception of Philadelphia) are first hand - dates and names are specified - and that, despite some repugnance, he has not suppressed 'scenes which may be considered as reflecting discredit on those who ought to have prevented them'. The immediate result of this was the Society for the Reformation of Prison Discipline and more indirect influences can be followed through translations into European languages over the next few years. Buxton was born, bred and then married into the heart of British philanthropy - his mother was a Quaker do-gooder and he married Hannah Gurney, Elizabeth Fry's sister - and his life was devoted to reform: this is his first book and his last (1839) is on slavery.AUD 350.00 [Appr.: EURO 243.5 US$ 264.53 | £UK 207 | JP¥ 29156] Book number 8550
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