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This guide is designed as a starting point for learning about anti-racism and systemic racism. You will find electronic books and streaming video from the Libraries’ collection. The guide also links to community-based organizations and non-profit journa
Named one of the most important nonfiction books of the 21st century by Entertainment Weekly, Slate, Chronicle of Higher Education, Literary Hub, Book Riot, and Zora A tenth-anniversary edition of the iconic bestseller--"one of the most influential books of the past 20 years," according to the Chronicle of Higher Education--with a new preface by the author "It is in no small part thanks to Alexander's account that civil rights organizations such as Black Lives Matter have focused so much of their energy on the criminal justice system." --Adam Shatz, London Review of Books Seldom does a book have the impact of Michelle Alexander's The New Jim Crow. Since it was first published in 2010, it has been cited in judicial decisions and has been adopted in campus-wide and community-wide reads; it helped inspire the creation of the Marshall Project and the new $100 million Art for Justice Fund; it has been the winner of numerous prizes, including the prestigious NAACP Image Award; and it has spent nearly 250 weeks on the New York Times bestseller list. Most important of all, it has spawned a whole generation of criminal justice reform activists and organizations motivated by Michelle Alexander's unforgettable argument that "we have not ended racial caste in America; we have merely redesigned it." As the Birmingham News proclaimed, it is "undoubtedly the most important book published in this century about the U.S." Now, ten years after it was first published, The New Press is proud to issue a tenth-anniversary edition with a new preface by Michelle Alexander that discusses the impact the book has had and the state of the criminal justice reform movement today.
With her characteristic brilliance, grace and radical audacity, Angela Y. Davis has put the case for the latest abolition movement in American life: the abolition of the prison. As she quite correctly notes, American life is replete with abolition movements, and when they were engaged in these struggles, their chances of success seemed almost unthinkable. For generations of Americans, the abolition of slavery was sheerest illusion. Similarly,the entrenched system of racial segregation seemed to last forever, and generations lived in the midst of the practice, with few predicting its passage from custom. The brutal, exploitative (dare one say lucrative?) convict-lease system that succeeded formal slavery reaped millions to southern jurisdictions (and untold miseries for tens of thousands of men, and women). Few predicted its passing from the American penal landscape. Davis expertly argues how social movements transformed these social, political and cultural institutions, and made such practices untenable. In Are Prisons Obsolete?, Professor Davis seeks to illustrate that the time for the prison is approaching an end. She argues forthrightly for "decarceration", and argues for the transformation of the society as a whole.
The Real Cost of Prisons Comix by Lois Ahrens (Editor); Craig Gilmore (Preface by)
Publication Date: 2008-09-01
Collects three comic books published by the Real Cost of Prison project.
Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners is a graphic narrative project that attempts to distill the fundamental components of what scholars, activists, and artists have identified as the Mass Incarceration movement in the United States. Since the early 1990s, activist critics of the US prison system have marked its emergence as a "complex" in a manner comparable to how President Eisenhower described the Military Industrial Complex. Like its institutional "cousin," the Prison Industrial Complex features a critical combination of political ideology, far-reaching federal policy, and the neo-liberal directive to privatize institutions traditionally within the purview of the government. The result is that corporations have capital incentives to capture and contain human bodies. The Prison Industrial Complex relies on the "law and order" ideology fomented by President Nixon and developed at least partially in response to the unrest generated through the Civil Rights Movement. It is (and has been) enhanced and emboldened via the US "war on drugs," a slate of policies that by any account have failed to do anything except normalize the warehousing of nonviolent substance abusers in jails and prisons that serve more as criminal training centers then as redemptive spaces for citizens who might re-enter society successfully. Prison Industrial Complex For Beginners is a primer for how these issues emerged and how our awareness of the systems at work in mass incarceration might be the very first step in reforming an institution responsible for some of our most egregious contemporary civil rights violations.
Boldly and eloquently contributing to the argument against the prison system in the United States, these provocative essays offer an ideological and practical framework for empowering prisoners instead of incarcerating them. Experts and activists who have worked within and against the prison system join forces here to call attention to the debilitating effects of a punishment-driven society and offer clear-eyed alternatives that emphasize working directly with prisoners and their communities. Edited by Stephen John Hartnett, the volume offers rhetorical and political analyses of police culture, the so-called drug war, media coverage of crime stories, and the public-school-to-prison pipeline. The collection also includes case studies of successful prison arts and education programs in Michigan, California, Missouri, Wisconsin, and Pennsylvania that provide creative and intellectual resources typically denied to citizens living behind bars. Writings and artwork created by prisoners in such programs richly enhance the volume. Contributors are Buzz Alexander, Rose Braz, Travis L. Dixon, Garrett Albert Duncan, Stephen John Hartnett, Julilly Kohler-Hausmann, Daniel Mark Larson, Erica R. Meiners, Janie Paul, Lori Pompa, Jonathan Shailor, Robin Sohnen, and Myesha Williams.
"Do not underestimate the power of the book you are holding in your hands." --Michelle Alexander More than 2 million people are now imprisoned in the United States, producing the highest rate of incarceration in the world. How did this happen? As the director of The Sentencing Project, Marc Mauer has long been one of the country’s foremost experts on sentencing policy, race, and the criminal justice system. His book Race to Incarcerate has become the essential text for understanding the exponential growth of the U.S. prison system; Michelle Alexander, author of the bestselling The New Jim Crow, calls it "utterly indispensable." Now, Sabrina Jones, a member of the World War 3 Illustrated collective and an acclaimed author of politically engaged comics, has collaborated with Mauer to adapt and update the original book into a vivid and compelling comics narrative. Jones's dramatic artwork adds passion and compassion to the complex story of the penal system’s shift from rehabilitation to punishment and the ensuing four decades of prison expansion, its interplay with the devastating "War on Drugs," and its corrosive effect on generations of Americans. With a preface by Mauer and a foreword by Alexander, Race to Incarcerate: A Graphic Retelling presents a compelling argument about mass incarceration’s tragic impact on communities of color--if current trends continue, one of every three black males and one of every six Latino males born today can expect to do time in prison. The race to incarcerate is not only a failed social policy, but also one that prevents a just, diverse society from flourishing.
This book brings together a collection of social justice scholars and activists who take Foucault's concept of discipline and punishment to explain how prisons are constructed in society from nursing homes to zoos. This book expands the concept of prison to include any institution that dominates, oppresses, and controls. Criminologists and others, who have been concerned with reforming or dismantling the criminal justice system, have mostly avoided to look at larger carceral structures in society. In this book, for example, scholars and activists question the way patriarchy has incapacitated women and imagine the deinstitutionalization of people with disabilities. In a time when popular sentiment critiques the dominant role of the elites (the "one percenters"), the state's role in policing dissenting voices, school children, LGBTQ persons, people of color, and American Indian Nations, needs to be investigated. A prison, as defined in this book, is an institution or system that oppresses and does not allow freedom for a particular group. Within this definition, we include the imprisonment of nonhuman animals and plants, which are too often overlooked.
Black women in marginalized communities are uniquely at risk of battering, rape, sexual harassment, stalking and incest. Through the compelling stories of Black women who have been most affected by racism, persistent poverty, class inequality, limited access to support resources or institutions, Beth E. Richie shows that the threat of violence to Black women has never been more serious, demonstrating how conservative legal, social, political and economic policies have impacted activism in the U.S.-based movement to end violence against women. Richie argues that Black women face particular peril because of the ways that race and culture have not figured centrally enough in the analysis of the causes and consequences of gender violence. As a result, the extent of physical, sexual and other forms of violence in the lives of Black women, the various forms it takes, and the contexts within which it occurs are minimized--at best--and frequently ignored. Arrested Justice brings issues of sexuality, class, age, and criminalization into focus right alongside of questions of public policy and gender violence, resulting in a compelling critique, a passionate re-framing of stories, and a call to action for change. Black women in marginalized communities are uniquely at risk of battering, rape, sexual harassment, stalking and incest. Through the compelling stories of Black women who have been most affected by racism, persistent poverty, class inequality, limited access to support resources or institutions, Beth E. Richie shows that the threat of violence to Black women has never been more serious, demonstrating how conservative legal, social, political and economic policies have impacted activism in the U.S.-based movement to end violence against women. Richie argues that Black women face particular peril because of the ways that race and culture have not figured centrally enough in the analysis of the causes and consequences of gender violence. As a result, the extent of physical, sexual and other forms of violence in the lives of Black women, the various forms it takes, and the contexts within which it occurs are minimized--at best--and frequently ignored. Arrested Justice brings issues of sexuality, class, age, and criminalization into focus right alongside of questions of public policy and gender violence, resulting in a compelling critique, a passionate re-framing of stories, and a call to action for change.
Does justice exist for Blacks in America? This comprehensive compilation of essays documents the historical and contemporary impact of the law and criminal justice system on people of African ancestry in the United States. * 120 A-Z entries on race and criminal justice and famous or infamous African American crime perpetrators or victims * Contributions from more than 50 distinguished scholars from many criminal justice/criminology academic programs across the country * An index of key persons, events, and legislation
In a bold and innovative argument, a rising legal star shows readers how the mass incarceration of a disproportionate number of black men amounts to a devastating system of racial control. This is a terrifying reality that exists in the UK as much as in the US. Despite the triumphant dismantling of the Jim Crow laws, the system that once forced African-Americans into a segregated second-class citizenship still haunts and the criminal justice system still unfairly targets black men and deprives an entire segment of the population of their basic rights.
Policing has become one of the urgent issues of our time, the target of dramatic movements and front-page coverage from coast to coast in the United States, and, indeed, across the world. Now a star-studded, wide-ranging collection of writers and activists offers a global response, describing ongoing struggles over policing from New York to Ferguson to Los Angeles, as well as London, Rio de Janeiro, Johannesburg, and Mexico City. This book, combining first-hand accounts from organisers with the research of eminent scholars and contributions by leading artists, traces the global rise of the 'broken-windows' style of policing, first established in New York City under Police Commissioner William Bratton, who was appointed to the post in 1993 and then reappointed twenty years later in 2013. Initially praised as a comprehensive model of community policing, it purports to prevent major crimes by first criminalising small signs of disorder. In practice, this doctrine has broadened police power and contributed to the contemporary crisis of policing that has been sparked by notorious incidents of police brutality and killings.
The Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, passed in 1865, has long been viewed as a definitive break with the nation's past by abolishing slavery and ushering in an inexorable march toward black freedom. Slaves of the State presents a stunning counterhistory to this linear narrative of racial, social, and legal progress in America. Dennis Childs argues that the incarceration of black people and other historically repressed groups in chain gangs, peon camps, prison plantations, and penitentiaries represents a ghostly perpetuation of chattel slavery. He exposes how the Thirteenth Amendment's exception clause--allowing for enslavement as "punishment for a crime"--has inaugurated forms of racial capitalist misogynist incarceration that serve as haunting returns of conditions Africans endured in the barracoons and slave ship holds of the Middle Passage, on plantations, and in chattel slavery. Childs seeks out the historically muted voices of those entombed within terrorizing spaces such as the chain gang rolling cage and the modern solitary confinement cell, engaging the writings of Toni Morrison and Chester Himes as well as a broad range of archival materials, including landmark court cases, prison songs, and testimonies, reaching back to the birth of modern slave plantations such as Louisiana's "Angola" penitentiary. Slaves of the State paves the way for a new understanding of chattel slavery as a continuing social reality of U.S. empire--one resting at the very foundation of today's prison industrial complex that now holds more than 2.3 million people within the country's jails, prisons, and immigrant detention centers.
In his cogent and groundbreaking book, From Slave Ship to Supermax, Patrick Elliot Alexander argues that the disciplinary logic and violence of slavery haunt depictions of the contemporary U.S. prison in late twentieth-century Black fiction. Alexander links representations of prison life in James Baldwin's novel If Beale Street Could Talk to his engagements with imprisoned intellectuals like George Jackson, who exposed historical continuities between slavery and mass incarceration. Likewise, Alexander reveals how Toni Morrison's Beloved was informed by Angela Y. Davis's jail writings on slavery-reminiscent practices in contemporary women's facilities. Alexander also examines recurring associations between slave ships and prisons in Charles Johnson's Middle Passage, and connects slavery's logic of racialized premature death to scenes of death row imprisonment in Ernest Gaines' A Lesson Before Dying. Alexander ultimately makes the case that contemporary Black novelists depict racial terror as a centuries-spanning social control practice that structured carceral life on slave ships and slave plantations--and that mass-produces prisoners and prisoner abuse in post-Civil Rights America. These authors expand free society's view of torment confronted and combated in the prison industrial complex, where discriminatory laws and the institutionalization of secrecy have reinstated slavery's system of dehumanization.
The rate of women entering prison has increased nearly 400 percent since 1980, with African American women constituting the largest percentage of this population. However, despite their extremely disproportional representation in correctional institutions, little attention has been paid to their experiences within the criminal justice system. Inner Lives provides readers the rare opportunity to intimately connect with African American women prisoners. By presenting the women's stories in their own voices, Paula C. Johnson captures the reality of those who are in the system, and those who are working to help them. Johnson offers a nuanced and compelling portrait of this fastest-growing prison population by blending legal history, ethnography, sociology, and criminology. These striking and vivid narratives are accompanied by equally compelling arguments by Johnson on how to reform our nation's laws and social policies, in order to eradicate existing inequalities. Her thorough and insightful analysis of the historical and legal background of contemporary criminal law doctrine, sentencing theories, and correctional policies sets the stage for understanding the current system.
A collection of Jackson's letters from prison, Soledad Brother is an outspoken condemnation of the racism of white America and a powerful appraisal of the prison system that failed to break his spirit but eventually took his life. Jackson's letters make palpable the intense feelings of anger and rebellion that filled black men in America's prisons in the 1960s. But even removed from the social and political firestorms of the 1960s, Jackson's story still resonates for its portrait of a man taking a stand even while locked down.
In the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries imprisoned black women faced wrenching forms of gendered racial terror and heinous structures of economic exploitation. Subjugated as convict laborers and forced to serve additional time as domestic workers before they were allowed their freedom, black women faced a pitiless system of violence, terror, and debasement. Drawing upon black feminist criticism and a diverse array of archival materials, Sarah Haley uncovers imprisoned women's brutalization in local, county, and state convict labor systems, while also illuminating the prisoners' acts of resistance and sabotage, challenging ideologies of racial capitalism and patriarchy and offering alternative conceptions of social and political life. A landmark history of black women's imprisonment in the South, this book recovers stories of the captivity and punishment of black women to demonstrate how the system of incarceration was crucial to organizing the logics of gender and race, and constructing Jim Crow modernity.
This collection documents the efforts of the Prison Communication, Activism, Research, and Education collective (PCARE) to put democracy into practice by merging prison education and activism. Through life-changing programs in a dozen states (Arizona, Colorado, Illinois, Indiana, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Texas, Virginia, and Wisconsin), PCARE works with prisoners, in prisons, and in communities to reclaim justice from the prison-industrial complex. Based on years of pragmatic activism and engaged teaching, the materials in this volume present a sweeping inventory of how communities and individuals both within and outside of prisons are marshaling the arts, education, and activism to reduce crime and enhance citizenship. Documenting hands-on case studies that emphasize educational initiatives, successful prison-based programs, and activist-oriented analysis, Working for Justice provides readers with real-world answers based on years of pragmatic activism and engaged teaching. Contributors are David Coogan, Craig Lee Engstrom, Jeralyn Faris, Stephen John Hartnett, Edward A. Hinck, Shelly Schaefer Hinck, Bryan J. McCann, Nikki H. Nichols, Eleanor Novek, Brittany L. Peterson, Jonathan Shailor, Rachel A. Smith, Derrick L. Williams, Lesley A. Withers, Jennifer K. Wood, and Bill Yousman.
Punishment for Sale is the definitive modern history of private prisons, told through social, economic and political frames. The authors explore the origin of the ideas of modern privatization, the establishment of private prisons, and the efforts to keep expanding in the face of problems and bad publicity. The book provides a balanced telling of the story of private prisons and the resistance they engendered within the context of criminology, and it is intended for supplemental use in undergraduate and graduate courses in criminology, social problems, and race and ethnicity.
These essays, by writer-activists incarcerated because of their political beliefs and acts, offer some controversial and thought-provoking theories of contemporary social change and liberation movements.
#1 NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER * NOW A MAJOR MOTION PICTURE STARRING MICHAEL B. JORDAN AND JAMIE FOXX * A powerful true story about the potential for mercy to redeem us, and a clarion call to fix our broken system of justice--from one of the most brilliant and influential lawyers of our time. "[Bryan Stevenson's] dedication to fighting for justice and equality has inspired me and many others and made a lasting impact on our country."--John Legend NAMED ONE OF THE MOST INFLUENTIAL BOOKS OF THE DECADE BY CNN * Named One of the Best Books of the Year by The New York Times * The Washington Post * The Boston Globe * The Seattle Times * Esquire * Time Bryan Stevenson was a young lawyer when he founded the Equal Justice Initiative, a legal practice dedicated to defending those most desperate and in need: the poor, the wrongly condemned, and women and children trapped in the farthest reaches of our criminal justice system. One of his first cases was that of Walter McMillian, a young man who was sentenced to die for a notorious murder he insisted he didn't commit. The case drew Bryan into a tangle of conspiracy, political machination, and legal brinksmanship--and transformed his understanding of mercy and justice forever. Just Mercy is at once an unforgettable account of an idealistic, gifted young lawyer's coming of age, a moving window into the lives of those he has defended, and an inspiring argument for compassion in the pursuit of true justice. Winner of the Carnegie Medal for Excellence in Nonfiction * Winner of the NAACP Image Award for Nonfiction * Winner of a Books for a Better Life Award * Finalist for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize * Finalist for the Kirkus Reviews Prize * An American Library Association Notable Book "Every bit as moving as To Kill a Mockingbird, and in some ways more so . . . a searing indictment of American criminal justice and a stirring testament to the salvation that fighting for the vulnerable sometimes yields."--David Cole, The New York Review of Books "Searing, moving . . . Bryan Stevenson may, indeed, be America's Mandela."--Nicholas Kristof, The New York Times "You don't have to read too long to start cheering for this man. . . . The message of this book . . . is that evil can be overcome, a difference can be made. Just Mercy will make you upset and it will make you hopeful."--Ted Conover, The New York Times Book Review "Inspiring . . . a work of style, substance and clarity . . . Stevenson is not only a great lawyer, he's also a gifted writer and storyteller."--The Washington Post "As deeply moving, poignant and powerful a book as has been, and maybe ever can be, written about the death penalty."--The Financial Times "Brilliant."--The Philadelphia Inquirer
On August 9, 2014, Michael Brown, an unarmed African American high school senior, was shot by Officer Darren Wilson in Ferguson, Missouri. For months afterward, protestors took to the streets demanding justice, testifying to the racist and exploitative police department and court system, and connecting the shooting of Brown with the deaths of Trayvon Martin, Eric Garner, and other young black men at the hands of police across the country. In the wake of these protests, the Department of Justice launched a six-month investigation, resulting in a report that Colorlines characterizes as "so caustic it reads like an Onion article" and laying bare what the Huffington Post calls "a totalizing police regime beyond any of Kafka's ghastliest nightmares." Among the report's findings are that the Ferguson Police Department "Engages in a Pattern of Unconstitutional Stops and Arrests in Violation of the Fourth Amendment," "Detain[s] People Without Reasonable Suspicion and Arrest[s] People Without Probable Cause," "Engages in a Pattern of First Amendment Violations," "Engages in a Pattern of Excessive Force," and "Erode[s] Community Trust, Especially Among Ferguson's African-American Residents." Contextualized here in a substantial introduction by renowned legal scholar and former NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund president Theodore M. Shaw, The Ferguson Report is a sad, sobering, and important document, providing a snapshot of American law enforcement at the start of the twenty-first century, with resonance far beyond one small town in Missouri.
From broken-window policing in Detroit to prison-building in Appalachia, exploring the expansion of the carceral state and its oppressive social relations into everyday life Prison Land offers a geographic excavation of the prison as a set of social relations--including property, work, gender, and race--enacted across various landscapes of American life. Prisons, Brett Story shows, are more than just buildings of incarceration bound to cycles of crime and punishment. Instead, she investigates the production of carceral power at a range of sites, from buses to coalfields and from blighted cities to urban financial hubs, to demonstrate how the organization of carceral space is ideologically and materially grounded in racial capitalism. Story's critically acclaimed film The Prison in Twelve Landscapes is based on the same research that informs this book. In both, Story takes an expansive view of what constitutes contemporary carceral space, interrogating the ways in which racial capitalism is reproduced and for which police technologies of containment and control are employed. By framing the prison as a set of social relations, Prison Land forces us to confront the production of new carceral forms that go well beyond the prison system. In doing so, it profoundly undermines both conventional ideas of prisons as logical responses to the problem of crime and attachment to punishment as the relevant measure of a transformed criminal justice system.
Winner, 2020 ACJS Outstanding Book Award, given by the Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences A major statement on the juvenile justice system by one of America's leading experts The juvenile court lies at the intersection of youth policy and crime policy. Its institutional practices reflect our changing ideas about children and crime control. The Evolution of the Juvenile Court provides a sweeping overview of the American juvenile justice system's development and change over the past century. Noted law professor and criminologist Barry C. Feld places special emphasis on changes over the last 25 years--the ascendance of get tough crime policies and the more recent Supreme Court recognition that "children are different." Feld's comprehensive historical analyses trace juvenile courts' evolution though four periods--the original Progressive Era, the Due Process Revolution in the 1960s, the Get Tough Era of the 1980s and 1990s, and today's Kids Are Different era. In each period, changes in the economy, cities, families, race and ethnicity, and politics have shaped juvenile courts' policies and practices. Changes in juvenile courts' ends and means--substance and procedure--reflect shifting notions of children's culpability and competence. The Evolution of the Juvenile Court examines how conservative politicians used coded racial appeals to advocate get tough policies that equated children with adults and more recent Supreme Court decisions that draw on developmental psychology and neuroscience research to bolster its conclusions about youths' reduced criminal responsibility and diminished competence. Feld draws on lessons from the past to envision a new, developmentally appropriate justice system for children. Ultimately, providing justice for children requires structural changes to reduce social and economic inequality--concentrated poverty in segregated urban areas--that disproportionately expose children of color to juvenile courts' punitive policies. Historical, prescriptive, and analytical, The Evolution of the Juvenile Court evaluates the author's past recommendations to abolish juvenile courts in light of this new evidence, and concludes that separate, but reformed, juvenile courts are necessary to protect children who commit crimes and facilitate their successful transition to adulthood.
“A Citizen’s Guide to Recording the Police” summarizes both rights and restrictions, providing supporting court decisions in illuminating the legal components relevant to the recording of police actions. These include: “The Right to Gather Information,” “The Right to Record and Share,” and “Time, Place, and Manner Restrictions—And Other Limitations.”
Notably, the guide explains why police cannot seize or view smartphone recordings under most circumstances. It also clarifies why the First Amendment protects not only the dissemination of recordings but also the making of the recordings themselves, citing ACLU v. Alvarez.
APB: Artists Against Police Brutality by Bill Campbell (Editor); Jason Rodriguez (Editor); John Jennings (Editor)
Publication Date: 2015-10-28
An incredibly unique comic book benefit project featuring comic shorts, pin-ups, short essays, and flash fiction, the proceeds of which will be going to the Innocence ProjectWe've all seen the pictures: a six-year-old Ruby Bridges being escorted by U.S.
"How the police endanger us and why we need to find an alternative Recent years have seen an explosion of protest and concern about police brutality and repression--especially after long-held grievances in Ferguson, Missouri, erupted in months of violent protest following the police killing of Brown. Much of the conversation has focused on calls for enhancing police accountability, increasing police diversity, improving police training, and emphasizing community policing. Unfortunately, none of these is likely to produce results, because they fail to get at the core of the problem. The problem is policing itself--the dramatic expansion of the police role over the last forty years. This book attempts to jog public discussion of policing by revealing the tainted origins of modern policing as a tool of social control and demonstrating how the expanded role of the police is inconsistent with community empowerment, social justice--even public safety. Drawing on first-hand research from across the globe, Alex Vitale shows how the implementation of alternatives to policing, like drug legalization, regulation, and harm reduction instead of the policing of drugs, has led to reductions in crime, spending, and injustice"--
A story of resistance, power and politics as revealed through New York City's complex history of police brutality The 2014 killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri was the catalyst for a national conversation about race, policing, and injustice. The subsequent killings of other black (often unarmed) citizens led to a surge of media coverage which in turn led to protests and clashes between the police and local residents that were reminiscent of the unrest of the 1960s. Fight the Power examines the explosive history of police brutality in New York City and the black community's long struggle to resist it. Taylor brings this story to life by exploring the institutions and the people that waged campaigns to end the mistreatment of people of color at the hands of the police, including the black church, the black press, black communists and civil rights activists. Ranging from the 1940s to the mayoralty of Bill de Blasio, Taylor describes the significant strides made in curbing police power in New York City, describing the grassroots street campaigns as well as the accomplishments achieved in the political arena and in the city's courtrooms. Taylor challenges the belief that police reform is born out of improved relations between communities and the authorities arguing that the only real solution is radically reducing the police domination of New York's black citizens.
There is a reason why people claim great respect for officers of the law: the job, by description, is hard—if not deadly. It takes a certain kind of person to accept the consequences of the job— seeing the very worst situations, on a regular basis, and knowing that one’s life is on the line every hour of every day. Working in law enforcement is emotionally and psychologically draining. It affects these public servants both on and off the job. Said plainly, shaking an officers’ hand when you see them or posting a sign in the front yard that reads “Support the Badge” is lip service. Even going as far as to donate money to a crowdsourcing fundraising site does little to support the long-term professional development needs of officers. These are surface level signs of solidarity, and do little in terms of showing respect for the job and those who do it. For those who want to do more, this text provides reasons and a rationale for doing better by these public servants. Showing respect does not mean that one agrees with whatever another person or institution claims to be the “right” way. Showing respect and admiration means that we charge individuals to live up to their fullest potentials and integrate innovation wherever possible. In the case of policing in the era of Black Lives Matters, policing as usual simply is not an option any longer. It is disrespectful, to both the officers and those who are being policed, to rest on the laurels of past policing tactics. As we enter a time period in which police interactions are recorded (dash cams or body cams, for example) and new populations are being targeted (Latinx people), there is much to learn about what is working and what is not.
How did the land of the free become the home of the world's largest prison system? Elizabeth Hinton traces the rise of mass incarceration to an ironic source: not the War on Drugs of the Reagan administration but the War on Crime that began during Johnson's Great Society at the height of the civil rights era.
What is the reality of policing in the United States? Do the police keep anyone safe and secure other than the very wealthy? How do recent police killings of young black people in the United States fit into the historical and global context of anti-blackness? This collection of reports and essays (the first collaboration between Truthout and Haymarket Books) explores police violence against black, brown, indigenous and other marginalized communities, miscarriages of justice, and failures of token accountability and reform measures. It also makes a compelling and provocative argument against calling the police. Contributions cover a broad range of issues including the killing by police of black men and women, police violence against Latino and indigenous communities, law enforcement's treatment of pregnant people and those with mental illness, and the impact of racist police violence on parenting, as well as specific stories such as a Detroit police conspiracy to slap murder convictions on young black men using police informant and the failure of Chicago's much-touted Independent Police Review Authority, the body supposedly responsible for investigating police misconduct. The title Who Do You Serve, Who Do You Protect? is no mere provocation: the book also explores alternatives for keeping communities safe. Contributors include William C. Anderson, Candice Bernd, Aaron Cant#65533;, Thandi Chimurenga, Ejeris Dixon, Adam Hudson, Victoria Law, Mike Ludwig, Sarah Macaraeg, and Roberto Rodriguez.
In Holding Police Accountable, twelve of today¿s leading scholars on police work examine seminal research on the use of force and how it can inform today's research. The volume celebrates the late James J. Fyfe, the preeminent scholar on police use of force. In 1978 Fyfe found that administrative controls training, guidelines, and regulation reduced deadly shootings by officers without adversely affecting law enforcement or crime rates. The finding not only had profound impact on firearms policy, but compelled police departments to cooperate with independent researchers. Here, the scholars pick up the torch to work toward effective yet fair policing that will better protect all Americans.
"A passionate, incisive critique of the many ways in which women and girls of color are systematically erased or marginalized in discussions of police violence." --Michelle Alexander, author of The New Jim Crow Invisible No More is a timely examination of how Black women, Indigenous women, and women of color experience racial profiling, police brutality, and immigration enforcement. By placing the individual stories of Sandra Bland, Rekia Boyd, Dajerria Becton, Monica Jones, and Mya Hall in the broader context of the twin epidemics of police violence and mass incarceration, Andrea Ritchie documents the evolution of movements centered around women's experiences of policing. Featuring a powerful forward by activist Angela Davis, Invisible No More is an essential exposé on police violence against WOC that demands a radical rethinking of our visions of safety--and the means we devote to achieving it.
Let's begin with the basics: violence is an inherent part of policing. The police represent the most direct means by which the state imposes its will on the citizenry. They are armed, trained, and authorized to use force. Like the possibility of arrest, the threat of violence is implicit in every police encounter. Violence, as well as the law, is what they represent. Using media reports alone, the Cato Institute's last annual study listed nearly seven thousand victims of police "misconduct" in the United States. But such stories of police brutality only scratch the surface of a national epidemic. Every year, tens of thousands are framed, blackmailed, beaten, sexually assaulted, or killed by cops. Hundreds of millions of dollars are spent on civil judgments and settlements annually. Individual lives, families, and communities are destroyed. In this extensively revised and updated edition of his seminal study of policing in the United States, Kristian Williams shows that police brutality isn't an anomaly, but is built into the very meaning of law enforcement in the United States. From antebellum slave patrols to today's unarmed youth being gunned down in the streets, "peace keepers" have always used force to shape behavior, repress dissent, and defend the powerful. Our Enemies in Blue is a well-researched page-turner that both makes historical sense of this legalized social pathology and maps out possible alternatives. Kristian Williams is the author of several books, including American Methods: Torture and the Logic of Domination. He co-edited Life During Wartime: Resisting Counterinsurgency, and lives in Portland, Oregon.
This book will arm activists on the streets as well as anyone with an open mind on one of the key issues of our time with a critical analysis and ultimately a redefinition of the very idea of policing. The book contends that when we talk about police and police reform, we speak the language of police legitimation through the art of euphemism. So state sexual assault become body-cavity search, and ruthless beatings become non-compliance deterrence. A Field Guide to the Police is a study of the indirect and taken-forgranted language of policing, a language we 're all forced to speak when we talk about law enforcement. In entries like Police dog, Stop and frisk, and Rough ride, the authors expose the way copspeak suppresses the true meaning and history of policing. Like any other field guide, it reveals a world that is hidden in plain view. The book argues that a redefined language of policing might help chart a future free society.
From Trayvon Martin to Freddie Gray, the stories of police violence against Black people are too often in the news. In Policing Black Bodies Angela J. Hattery and Earl Smith make a compelling case that the policing of Black bodies goes far beyond these individual stories of brutality. They connect the regulation of African American people in many settings, including the public education system and the criminal justice system, into a powerful narrative about the myriad ways Black bodies are policed. Policing Black Bodies goes beyond chronicling isolated incidents of injustice to look at the broader systems of inequality in our society--how they're structured, how they harm Black people, and how we can work for positive change. The book discusses the school-to-prison pipeline, mass incarceration and the prison boom, the unique ways Black women and trans people are treated, wrongful convictions and the challenges of exoneration, and more. Each chapter of the book opens with a true story, explains the history and current state of the issue, and looks toward how we can work for change. The book calls attention to the ways class, race, and gender contribute to injustice, as well as the perils of colorblind racism--that by pretending not to see race we actually strengthen, rather than dismantle, racist social structures. Policing Black Bodies is a powerful call to acknowledge injustice and work for change.
Combining archival footage with testimony from activists and scholars, director Ava DuVernay's examination of the U.S. prison system looks at how the country's history of racial inequality drives the high rate of incarceration in America.
This piercing, Oscar-nominated film won Best Documentary at the Emmys, the BAFTAs and the NAACP Image Awards.
On July 10, 2015, Sandra Bland, a vibrant 28-year-old African American from Chicago, was arrested for a traffic violation in a small Texas town. After three days in custody, she was found hanging from a noose in her cell. Bland’s death was quickly ruled a suicide, sparking allegations of a murder and cover-up, and turning her case and name into a rallying cry nationwide. From the Oscar®-nominated, Emmy®- and Peabody Award-winning team of directors/producers Kate Davis and David Heilbroner, Say Her Name: The Life and Death of Sandra Bland examines this story in depth, revealing previously unknown details. The film follows the Bland family and legal team from the first weeks after her death as they try to find out what really happened in that jail cell in Texas. Embedded with the family and their lawyers, the filmmakers tracked the story for two years, drawing on key documents, jail footage and interviews with those closest to the events.
From D.W. Griffith's Birth of a Nation in 1915 to the recent Get Out, audiences and critics alike have responded to racism in motion pictures for more than a century. Whether subtle or blatant, racially biased images and narratives erase minorities, perpetuate stereotypes, and keep alive practices of discrimination and marginalization. Even in the 21st century, the American film industry is not "color blind," evidenced by films such as Babel (2006), A Better Life, (2011), and 12 Years a Slave (2013). The Encyclopedia of Racism in American Film documents one facet of racism in the film industry, wherein historically underrepresented peoples are misrepresented--through a lack of roles for actors of color, stereotyping, negative associations, and an absence of rich, nuanced characters. Offering insights and analysis from over seventy scholars, critics, and activists, the volume highlights issues such as: Hollywood's diversity crisisWhite Savior filmsMagic Negro tropesThe disconnect between screen images and lived realities of African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans, and Asians A companion to the ever-growing field of race studies, this volume opens up a critical dialogue on an always timely issue. The Encyclopedia of Racism in American Film will appeal to scholars of cinema, race and ethnicity studies, and cultural history.
Core to the work of YWFC is amplifying the voices, experiences, power & influence of systems-involved girls, women and TGNC people toward shifting the narrative & growing support for the change we want. In addition to producing and publishing our own research and analysis, YWFC leaders are trained to participate in social media, produce op eds and articles, publicly speak, speak out and produce and perform their own writing, poetry, performances and artwork.
Founded in 1993, Young Women’s Freedom Center (YWFC) is a leadership and advocacy organization led by systems-involved young and adult women and transgender gender non-conforming (TGNC) people of color who have grown up in poverty, worked in the underground street economy, and have been criminalized by social services such as foster care, welfare, and the mental health systems.
By offering safety, sister- & siblinghood, economic opportunities, accessible education and healing, we build self-determination, confidence and self-worth.
Our sisters and siblings support one another in living self-determined, healthy and fulfilling lives, while building our individual and collective leadership to change conditions, culture and policy toward decarceration and decriminalization.
We believe that those most impacted by cycles of poverty, violence, exploitation and incarceration are the experts in their own lives and best positioned to identify and lead the change needed to support true and transformative justice.
To create a groundswell of formerly incarcerated and systems-impacted girls, women and TGNC people to lead a movement to successfully decarcerated girls, women and TGNC people in California to lead Freedom 2030 – a ten-year political organizing, culture change & legislative campaign.
What we Know
Those most impacted by incarceration and cycles of intimate, community and state violence have the most information and are best positioned to lead legislative and community-change toward safety, healing and transformative justice.
When girls, women and TGNC people most impacted by these cycles lead, we bring everyone with us. Our families. Our communities. Our societies.
Poverty is a key driver of incarceration and recidivism: Girls, young women and TGNC youth living in poverty experience high rates of sexual exploitation which leads to further risk for incarceration.
Providing economic opportunities for formerly incarcerated and systems-impacted people is crucial to breaking cycles of poverty, exploitation and incarceration.
The skills used to survive the street, incarceration, foster care and public institutions are transferable to movements for change, social enterprise and community businesses
Funders for Justice created this website for funders because we believe that our collective investments in housing, education, health, transportation, food security, and jobs will fail if we do not also proactively work to divest this nation’s resources from criminalization. Our partners in the field are organizing for divestment from criminalization, and understand that as critical to the work of transforming communities to be truly safe and secure. This website is a toolkit for grantmakers, donors, and funder affinity groups, to help funders in confronting mass criminalization. We ask you to listen, learn, and take action.
Critical Resistance seeks to build an international movement to end the Prison Industrial Complex by challenging the belief that caging and controlling people makes us safe. We believe that basic necessities such as food, shelter, and freedom are what really make our communities secure. As such, our work is part of global struggles against inequality and powerlessness. The success of the movement requires that it reflect communities most affected by the PIC. Because we seek to abolish the PIC, we cannot support any work that extends its life or scope.
PARC is a prison abolitionist group committed to exposing and challenging all forms of institutionalized racism, sexism, able-ism, heterosexism, and classism, specifically within the Prison Industrial Complex (PIC). PARC believes in building strategies and tactics that build safety in our communities without reliance on the police or the PIC. We produce a directory that is free to prisoners upon request, and seek to work in solidarity with prisoners, ex-prisoners, their friends and families. We also work with teachers and activists on many prison issues. This work includes building action networks and materials that expose the continuing neglect and outright torture of more than 2 million people imprisoned within the USA; as well as the 5+ million who are under some form of surveillance and control by the so-called justice system. We are fully funded by individual donations and foundations. Donate to PARC here.
To expose the prison system in the U.S. as an engine of race war and genocide that all people of conscience must work to dismantle;
To expose that prisons kill, through the exposure of prisoners to toxics, environmental hazards, and medical neglect;
To support a moratorium on prison construction and a fight against the War on Drugs, the War on Immigrants, the War on Crime, and the use of prison slave labor;
To expose the institutionalization of torture as it is practiced by the U.S. at home and abroad; *To build awareness of prison issues outside the U.S. and international solidarity with political prisoners and peoples resisting U.S. aggression;
To inspire and motivate people to take positive action against the mass-incarceration system and for prisoners' human and civil rights;
To provide practical support to activists who are taking such action.
The Equal Justice Initiative is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, to challenging racial and economic injustice, and to protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.
The Marshall Project is a nonpartisan, nonprofit news organization that seeks to create and sustain a sense of national urgency about the U.S. criminal justice system. We achieve this through award-winning journalism, partnerships with other news outlets and public forums. In all of our work we strive to educate and enlarge the audience of people who care about the state of criminal justice.
ProPublica is an independent, nonprofit newsroom that produces investigative journalism with moral force. We dig deep into important issues, shining a light on abuses of power and betrayals of public trust — and we stick with those issues as long as it takes to hold power to account.
To expose abuses of power and betrayals of the public trust by government, business, and other institutions, using the moral force of investigative journalism to spur reform through the sustained spotlighting of wrongdoing.