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Incarceration in America

I spent three years teaching young men between the ages of 16 and 18 in a public high school run by the New York City Department of Education on Rikers Island, one of the world's largest penal colonies. Because Rikers is a jail, all of my students were awaiting trial. Most of them had been … Continue reading Incarceration in America

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Rikers: A Bright Green Future for a Dark Place?

One day, Rikers could be a source of light, in the form of solar power. Plus, Lee Zeldin’s efforts to avoid positions some New Yorkers consider unenlightened. By James Barron Nov. 2, 2022 You're reading the New York Today newsletter.  Local reporting on the stories that define the city. Plus weather, upcoming events, Metropolitan Diary and more. Get … Continue reading Rikers: A Bright Green Future for a Dark Place?

Sentence: Ten Years and a Thousand Books in Prison

Daniel Genis. Viking, $28 (320p) ISBN 978-0-525-42955-5 https://www.publishersweekly.com/978-0-525-42955-5 A man does hard time with the help of literature in this striking and soulful debut. Journalist Genis revisits his stint in New York State prisons from 2003 to 2014 after committing a string of knife-point street robberies to fund his heroin habit at the age of … Continue reading Sentence: Ten Years and a Thousand Books in Prison

THIS IS NOT JUSTICE

A Philadelphia teenager and the empty promise of the Sixth Amendment By Jake Tapper https://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2022/11/campaign-to-free-incarcerated-philadelphia-teenager-sixth-amendment/671527/ Painting by Fulton Leroy Washington (MR WASH). Source: Malike Sidibe for The Atlantic. OCTOBER 12, 2022 This article was featured in One Story to Read Today, a newsletter in which our editors recommend a single must-read from The Atlantic, Monday through Friday.  … Continue reading THIS IS NOT JUSTICE

Maine prison debate team beats MIT in historic competition

Courts and Crime Maine Public | By Susan Sharon Published October 20, 2022 at 5:44 PM EDT From left: Anita Volpe, Tatyana Tomlinson, Victoria Scott, Daniel Porter, Chandler Dugal and Shaun Libby from the Maine Department of Corrections debate team. Last week, with little fanfare, a historic, livestreamed debate took place. On one side: a pre-law student, … Continue reading Maine prison debate team beats MIT in historic competition

Seventh in a Series of Readings from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xRr6GvznsiM&t=1s Reading from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island “The New Plantation takes us into the chaos of Rikers Island, giving us the vivid voices of young men–kids, really–caught in the unrelenting grip of institutional racism. I found it riveting.” –Monica Wood, author of When We Were the Kennedys, Ernie’s Ark, and One-in-a-Million Boy “It’s easy to forget … Continue reading Seventh in a Series of Readings from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

A Filmmaker Who Sees Prison Life With Love and Complexity

The Culture Issue - The New York Times Garrett Bradley has made a documentary, “Time,” that stubbornly resists all the easy ways of thinking about incarceration in America. By Ismail Muhammad October 6, 2020 When I first watched “Time,” Garrett Bradley’s feature documentary debut, I found myself confused at what exactly I was audience to. Was … Continue reading A Filmmaker Who Sees Prison Life With Love and Complexity

Sixth in a Series of Readings from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

https://www.youtube.com/embed/1t0hA7byLpE “The New Plantation takes us into the chaos of Rikers Island, giving us the vivid voices of young men–kids, really–caught in the unrelenting grip of institutional racism. I found it riveting.” –Monica Wood, author of When We Were the Kennedys, Ernie’s Ark, and One-in-a-Million Boy “It’s easy to forget people of whatever age who have been disappeared by … Continue reading Sixth in a Series of Readings from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

Fifth in a series of short readings from my memoir about teaching incarcerated high school students in NYC–The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

https://www.youtube.com/embed/_GjY0e218zU Reading 5 of a series of short readings from The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island “The New Plantation takes us into the chaos of Rikers Island, giving us the vivid voices of young men–kids, really–caught in the unrelenting grip of institutional racism. I found it riveting.” –Monica Wood, author of When We Were the Kennedys, Ernie’s … Continue reading Fifth in a series of short readings from my memoir about teaching incarcerated high school students in NYC–The New Plantation: Lessons from Rikers Island

Speech from James Baldwin in Debate with William F. Buckley

https://aeon.co/videos/the-legendary-debate-that-laid-down-us-political-lines-on-race-justice-and-history?utm_source=Aeon+Newsletter&utm_campaign=dbe3431fe4-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2019_08_05_06_29&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_411a82e59d-dbe3431fe4-68662141&fbclid=IwAR2VjyY9c1-ShgjhvnWMBh4I2K-IrkrGgBs23cq6tSo7627HPE1eUucxKOo Listen to this speech from James Baldwin with an open heart and mind, and I predict that you will not be able to vote for Donald Trump. Maybe you won't admit it, but when you get in the ballot box, your hand will rebel. Definitely among the most powerful descriptions of American history and … Continue reading Speech from James Baldwin in Debate with William F. Buckley