Dr. Malcolm Rigsby, associate professor of sociology and coordinator of criminal justice degrees at Henderson State University, participated in a panel discussion on prison gang disengagement at the annual meeting of the American Society of Criminology (ASC) held Nov. 14-18 in Philadelphia.
A longtime member of the ASC, Rigsby has presented research at previous meetings. This year’s author panel centered on research examining the role of religion and spirituality in the negotiated process of gang disengagement.
Rigsby presented a paper entitled Prison Narrative on Leaving the Gang for Religion.
The ASC is one of the oldest and largest annual meeting in the fields of criminology and criminal justice.
Rigsby also contributed a chapter in a new book entitled Finding Freedom in Confinement: The Role of Religion in Prison Life.
The book examines the nature and impact of faith and religion in prison and summarizes contemporary and cutting-edge research on religion in correctional contexts. This enables a scientific understanding of how prisoners use faith, religion and spirituality in their everyday lives.
Rigsby’s contribution extends his research and study of the conversion process, transformative characteristics in self and social identity, and how these qualities may assist in desistance from crime, thereby reducing recidivism rates.