13 Women: Parables from Prison

Karlene Faith, Editor, Anne Near, With Douglas & McIntyre $18.95 (347p) ISBN 978-1-55365-142-0
Imprisoned women are among the least heard and seen in our society, often invisible even before their incarceration. In this volume, activist scholars Faith and Near allow these women to speak for themselves (though the authors make their own political views clear through their commentary). Convicted on charges of fraud, drug possession or domestic violence, each woman speaks honestly of her crime but more of her experience in prison: the friendships and rivalries, the meaningless labor, the educational, religious and informal groups that have given them hope. Faith's interviews span 30 years, though most of the stories here come from the 1970s and '80s. Those looking for a current report from the front lines of women's incarceration systems won't find it here, and a chapter on the cruelties visited on Native American women, inside and outside of prison, seems especially misplaced. Quibbles aside, readers interested to encounter the deeply honest, uncensored voices of those who are so rarely heard will be more than satisfied.
Reviewed on: 02/06/2006
Release date: 02/01/2006
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 368 pages - 978-1-77100-105-2
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