In the era of colorblindness, it is no longer socially permissible to use race, explicitly, as a justification for discrimination, exclusion, and social contempt. Yet, as legal star Michelle Alexander reveals, today it is perfectly legal to discriminate against convicted criminals in nearly all the ways that it was once legal to discriminate against African Americans. Once you’re labeled a felon, the old forms of discrimination - employment discrimination, housing discrimination, denial of the right to vote, denial of educational opportunity, denial of food stamps and other public benefits, and exclusion from jury service - are suddenly legal.
©2012 Michelle Alexander (P)2012 Recorded Books, LLC
The author has provided a well-researched book on the inequities of the American justice system, and on the broader implications of this inequality. I learned a lot, and was greatly challenged by her argument. Yet, as I listened I often found myself thinking, "Wait, didn't I just here that yesterday, and the day before that...?"
This is a book that all Americans should read. Be prepared to come away feeling ashamed of being American. Well written and researched, Michelle Alexander minutely details the justice system in America in the aftermath of the War on Drugs. Whatever your politics, you owe it to yourself to understand the economic and social price that we are paying for incarcerating so many of our young black population.
The narration gives the book just the right amount of pathos.
Regardless of you political views or race, this is an important perspective of the history of incarceration in our country.
Yes, and SHE achieves this by walking you thru the historical context of the issue and how it is a systemic issue.
It is unfortunate that the audible chapters do not match up with the book chapters making it hard to utilize this version as a tool with the hard copy.
Important information, should make us all uneasy about the future that has been crafted for an entire segment of the population by a combination of the "war on drugs" and commercialization of corrections. My only quibble is that it is a little repetitive. The narration is perfect. Totally appropriate and easy on the ears (if not on the brain).
Definitely. It was eye opening, informative, and well-written.
This book illuminated a huge social and racial issue in the U.S. It was written in an accessible and understandable way.
Her reading is expressive and keeps the listener engaged.
I learned a ton about the workings of the criminal justice system that I didn't know.
It is an eye opening book and some may not agree with everything written as did I. But there is no doubt the author's take on the War on Drugs is dead on. Makes a lot of good points and you have to be willing to be open minded.
The chapters about the war on drugs. It was spot on
Wasnt this type of book.
No, it was a pretty deep and thought provoking book. You need time process it and think about it. So I would put it down and come back to it
As a white male who works in the correctional field I find it eye opening. Didn't agree with everything but there is a lot that makes sense.
Michelle Alexander has put together a very well written and well researched book regarding the horrors of the drug war. She goes into great detail about how minority populations (primarily blacks) have been devastated by the unsuccessful war on drugs. She makes a few mentions of how poor whites have recently become affected by the same war on drugs ala "The House I Live In". However, her conclusions regarding the escalation of the war on drugs seem to be biased. She continuously blames "conservatives" for the war on drugs. They bear some blame, no doubt. But to be more accurate, it seems that Republicans (sometimes conservative) would be a better way to describe those who have caused the escalation. Furthermore, she places little blame on Democrats and usually makes excuses for those who contributed.
In the end, it's clear Ms. Alexander sees the world through a right vs left paradigm. But the truth is that when assessing responsibility for the drug war, a populist vs authoritarian, or libertarian vs statist view would be much better in assessing political blame. After all, a true conservative should believe that a small government is best. The drug war is a result of the exponential increase in the size of government. But again, I will continue to recommend this book to friends with that caveat.
What I most deeply appreciate about this work is its depth and fullness, it sincere caring, unapologetic straightforward courage, its clarity, and its point-on focus about one of the greatest, most troubling, and far too often evaded issues this nation faces.
Michelle Alexander is absolutely brilliant, bold, and a true giant in the struggle for human decency and justice. The New Jim Crow shows how contemporary methods have undergone a careful refinement in order to perpetuate the worn-out racial caste system in America.
Comparing the "New Jim Crow" to previous forms of control, Michelle shows how precisely this new systems is tailored to match the subtleties of current conditions, conditions not so apt to exhibit or support more overt forms of bigotry. She shows how stereotypical images in the media about people of color in general, and young black men in particular feed an established belief system in the back of the American mind that continues to want to hold that there are some humans that are better, more valuable than others, that people of color are more prone to criminal behaviors than whites, although the facts suggest that crime is committed at surprisingly similar rates among all people.
What this book clearly shows is that 1. It is much more easier for people of color to get snatched up in the criminal "justice" system than ever before. 2. Once caught, one is stuck in the system for a much longer periods of time than ever before. 3. And once one has paid their debt in this way, one can;t seem to get beyond stigma of the experience of having been incarcerated (loss of rights, inability to get employment, housing, government benefits, etc.).
Michelle acknowledges and does not excuse the deep pain and overwhelming destruction caused by crime, but she carefully shows how the current system is really not so much about eliminating crime as it is eliminating and disempowering the presence of free people of color in this society.
This book is well researched, clean and crisp, presenting an abundance of facts upon which it base its arguments. I would recommend it to anyone who has a heart to care and a mind to know the truth, and the conviction that humanity can set a far better example of what it means to be civilized.
Karen Chilton does an excellent job narrating this work. She helps keep the focus on the work itself, and her reading is flawless.
The enormous amount of knowledge and clarity about this deeply important subject. I plan to listen to it again with more attention to the details.
I am deeply grateful to Michelle Alexander for putting forth such a great effort and producing a work of such quality and value.
I found more how prejudice permeates our world still.
I think everyone in America should read this necessary book. Michelle Alexander is well schooled in this topic and has done her research well. Only God can turn our hearts away from fear and hate but we can educate ourselves in how to recognize the fear in our hearts and the hearts of others.
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