Volume 17, Number 2 of the Journal of Prisoners on Prisons is a special collection based on the theme “Abolition and the Universal Carceral”. Edited by Mike Larsen, many of the included articles were presented in London, England in late July 2008 at the Colloquium on the Universal Carceral – part of the 12th International Conference on Penal Abolition (ICOPA XII). The Colloquium focused on the “proliferation of new forms of carceral control” (Gaucher, 2007) and on those aspects of the carceral experience that seem to remain constant across geography and time. Unified by a “politics of hope [and a] rejection of the position that imprisonment need be viewed as a normal and inevitable part of our future” (Larsen, 2008), the articles included in JPP 17(2) cover a variety of topics and represent a range of voices, from around the world. Major themes include critical reflections on health and mental heath ‘services’ in prisons, immigration and security certificate detention, and political imprisonment. The issue concludes with a Response
piece on “The Abolitionist Stance” by Thomas Mathiesen, which offers both a call to action and a theoretical grounding for a renewed spirit of penal abolitionism.