U.S. Prisons Ban Books Critical of Criminal Justice System

U.S. Prisons Ban Books Critical of Criminal Justice System

Book Culture

For a country intent on the loosest possible definitions of free speech, one of our most marginalized populations is subject to an insidious degree of censorship. The United States—the world leader in incarceration, imprisoning 2.2 million at this very moment—is fixated on free speech, but we favor the adjective over the verb. Prisons throughout the country are banning books that disagree with the racial disparity in U.S. prisons, the prison-industrial complex, and other incisive critiques of mass incarceration. And some are banning books altogether: one Georgia jail recently imposed a ban on all books, excluding only religious texts. Louisiana has …