Cover: Life Imprisonment: A Global Human Rights Analysis, from Harvard University PressCover: Life Imprisonment in HARDCOVER

Life Imprisonment

A Global Human Rights Analysis

Add to Cart

Product Details


$45.00 • £36.95 • €40.50

ISBN 9780674980662

Publication Date: 01/14/2019


464 pages

6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches

2 maps, 7 illus., 7 tables


Will inspire and influence scholars and public policy advocates everywhere… This excellent book is in a class by itself.Choice

Part treatise, part worldwide empirical investigation, and part normative argument, Life Imprisonment is a tour de force. It shines bright light on a legislatively prescribed and judicially imposed sentence that, remarkably, has drawn practically no scholarly attention. Until now. For the foreseeable future this book will stand as the definitive source of information on and critique of the most serious punishment practically all countries regularly impose.—James B. Jacobs, New York University School of Law

The authors have succeeded magnificently in weaving a vast array of materials into an authoritative text. Years of network building, data collection, fact checking, and interpretation have enabled them to make a major contribution to a pressing area of criminal law. This humane and important book will become the touchstone for scholars of extreme punishment.—Ian O’Donnell, University College Dublin School of Law

Van Zyl Smit and Appleton have provided the first comprehensive study of the most common form of harsh punishment in the world today: the penal life sentence. For the first time research on this crucial topic can move on a comparative basis. This volume is an essential resource for the libraries of penal reformers, human rights lawyers, and students everywhere of comparative law, punishment, and society.—Jonathan Simon, University of California Berkeley School of Law

Recent News

From Our Blog

Photo of Lucia Jacobs as a child sitting next to Oaky

How to Plant a Forest

For this week’s University Press Week Blog Tour, Lucia Jacobs offers us a glimpse of environmental stewardship as seen through the activities of the ubiquitous squirrel, a species native to the Americas, Africa, and Eurasia from the Eocene Epoch onward. Lucia Jacobs is Professor of Psychology and Neuroscience at the

‘manifold glories of classical Greek and Latin’

The digital Loeb Classical Library ( extends the founding mission of James Loeb with an interconnected, fully searchable, perpetually growing virtual library of all that is important in Greek and Latin literature.