- Revisiting “Moments” of Innovation and Replacement: Penal scholars have long been drawn to moments when an old punishment is apparently replaced by a newly innovated one. However, a closer look at such moments reveals that innovation always has longer roots (a prehistory) that precede these moments and the apparent replacement is usually something more like displacement and layering.
- Understanding Diffusion After Innovation: As penal scholars have been drawn to these moments of innovation, we have also traditionally paid less attention to what happens next—the diffusion that follows.
The Black Flower’s Slow Bloom: The Life Course of Proto-Prisons, 1776–1822
Paper in development: This paper examines the rise of the concept of penal incarceration as prisons transitioned from administrative holding tanks for a variety of people into places of punishment. It develops an ideal type model of the proto-prison and examines how this model came about, manifested in the 1790s, and ultimately gave way to the modern prisons of the 1820s and 1830s.
- The Promises and Pitfalls of Path Dependence Frameworks for Analyzing Penal Change (Punishment & Society, forthcoming)
- Punishment’s Legal Templates: A Theory of Formal Penal Change (Law and Society Review, 2019)
- Continuity in the Face of Penal Innovation: Revisiting the History of American Solitary Confinement (with Keramet Reiter, Law and Social Inquiry, 2018)
- The Prehistory of Innovation: A Longer View of Penal Change (Punishment & Society, 2018)
- Penal Change as Penal Layering: A Case Study of Proto-Prison Adoption and Capital Punishment Reduction, 1785–1822 (Punishment & Society, 2016)
- A Neo-Institutional Account of Prison Diffusion (Law & Society Review, 2015)
- Three Waves of American Penal Development, 1790-1920 (Punishment and Incarceration: A Global Perspective, 2014)
- The Unintended Consequences of Penal Reform: A Case Study of Penal Transportation in Eighteenth-Century London (Law & Society Review, 2012)