The text focuses on the multiple forms of religiosity (based on different types of motivation) of inmates in Czech prisons from the perspective of three groups of respondents: prison inmates, prison guards and representatives of a number of churches. The study is based on an ethnographic study of prisons in the Czech Republic. The data corpus includes qualitative interviews with selected actors in the prison world, material gathered through observations inside prisons and an analysis of the documentation on the Czech penitentiary system. Through this research, we found that the key respondents feel that there is some ambivalence around the religiosity of inmates and that the pragmatic approach many inmates take to faith is becoming a controversial issue. Our research demonstrated that the presence of religiosity of inmates in prison is not really accepted in a clearly positive manner as it may seem at first glance. On the contrary, the presence of it in prisons has become the subject of controversy among its main actors.
Department of Sociology, Faculty of Philosophy and Arts, University of West Bohemia, Avalon, Poděbradova 1, 306 14 Plzen, Czech Republic
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