Congratulations to Tim Causer and Philip Schofield for the publication of the edited collection of Jeremy Bentham’s Panopticon versus New South Wales and other writings on Australia ( UCL Press, 2022).
This is the first volume of The Collected Works of Jeremy Bentham to be published in open-access. It can also be purchased from UCL Press in epub (£0.99), paperback (£25), and hardback (£45) formats, and the publisher is offering 20% off print copies until 31 August 2022 when you use the code UCLMC22678L at checkout.
The volume contains the following works, all but one of which are intimately connected with the genesis and failure of Bentham’s panopticon penitentiary scheme:
- The ‘New Wales’ fragments of 1791, never before published, in which Bentham first wrote in any detail about New South Wales.
- ‘Correspondence, sent to William Wilberforce, of Jeremy Bentham with Sir Charles Bunbury’ (1802), never before published and essentially a primer to how Bentham sought to use his writings on New South Wales to cajole and threaten the British government to proceed with the panopticon scheme.
- ‘Letter to Lord Pelham’ (1802), the first detailed critique of transportation to New South Wales, in which Bentham assesses the penal colony against his ‘five ends of penal justice’, namely i) example; ii) reformation; iii) incapacitation; iv) compensation; and v) economy.
- ‘Second Letter to Lord Pelham’ (1802), in which Bentham illustrates the ongoing failure of New South Wales by comparing it unfavourably to penitentiaries in Pennsylvania and New York.
- ‘Third Letter to Lord Pelham (1802-3), never before published, in which Bentham turns his attention to the prison hulks, alleging that the government’s desire to abandon the panopticon and persist with New South Wales had directly led to the deaths of dozens of hulk prisoners.
- ‘A Plea for the Constitution’ (1803), in which Bentham argues that New South Wales had been founded illegally.
- ‘Colonization Company Proposal’ (1831), never before published, in which Bentham comments favourably on the National Colonization Society’s plan to establish a free colony on the south coast of Australia.