Alias Grace Historical Context

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The Kingston Penitentiary, which opened in 1835 (eight years before Grace Marks was sentenced), was the first so-called modern prison to be built in Canada. It was to take on a different approach to incarceration. Instead of being a place solely dedicated to punishment, the official program was based on reform. Today, it remains one of the oldest prisons in continuous use in the entire world. Across the street from the main penitentiary is the Kingston Prison for Women, which opened in 1934. Prior to the opening of the Prison for Women, females were jailed in the main building but segregated from the male population. The penitentiary, with its massive gray limestone walls, has the appearance of an ancient and imposing fortress. It is located right on the waterfront of Lake Ontario; and in 1976, the sailing events of the Olympics were held right outside the building. The...

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This section contains 842 words
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Alias Grace from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.