The book opens with a description of the two key sites in my study: El Valle Juvenile Detention and Legacy community school. I describe the focus of the project and the questions I address. Here, I emphasize how these two institutions and wraparound services shape the pathways of my participants and how these young women navigate these interlocking entities. I then discuss why understanding these new educational and penal connections is important, especially the role they play in the lives of the Latina girls in my study. In this chapter I introduce the term wraparound incarceration, which I coin in the book. I draw on previous research on intersectionality, the school-to-prison pipeline, life course theory and work on gender and crime to situate my own intellectual contributions. The chapter ends with a discussion of the major components of the book, providing readers a “map” of what to expect in the text. Finally, I introduce my primary respondents who will lead off and end every chapter in this manuscript. This introduction as a whole reminds the readers of the importance of studying the processes that lead this growing group of girls into the juvenile justice system.
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