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Abolition Democracy: Beyond Empire, Prisons, and Torture (Open Media Series) 1ST Edition

8 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-1583226957
ISBN-10: 1583226958
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Over the last forty-odd years, ANGELA YVONNE DAVIS has been active in numerous organizations challenging prison-related repression. Born in Birmingham, Alabama in 1944, Davis studied at Brandeis University, the Sorbonne, and with Herbert Marcuse at the Goethe Institute. Her advocacy on behalf of political prisoners, and her alleged connection to the Marin County courthouse incident, led to three capital charges, sixteen months in jail awaiting trial, and a highly publicized acquittal in 1972. In 1998, Davis was one of the twenty-five organizers of the historic Berkeley, California conference “Critical Resistance: Beyond the Prison Industrial Complex.” She is the author of many books, including Are Prisons Obsolete? and The Meaning of Freedom. She currently teaches in the History of Consciousness Department at the University of California, Santa Cruz.

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Product Details

  • Series: Open Media Series
  • Paperback: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Seven Stories Press; 1ST edition (October 4, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1583226958
  • ISBN-13: 978-1583226957
  • Product Dimensions: 4.9 x 0.4 x 6.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #310,986 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Strode on July 1, 2011
Format: Paperback
This small text is densely packed Davis' insight into the history of social justice organization and mobilization, the injustice of the prison system, and the interweaving of that system with capitalism to create an exportable prison economy with both a profit and social repression incentive. It reads quickly as a conversation develops between Mendieta and Davis that displays his intense engagement with the subject of his interview.

There is a gem of an answer at the end of the interview which speaks to Davis' concern that there is an overreliance on seeking role models for social justice mobilization when what she and others of her era did was essentially experimentation. In this way, modern organizers should be more fearless with experimenting with new ways to think their way through more highly evolved forms of racism and those threats to social justice which we encounter in the present era.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth Jackson on March 20, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I teach Restorative Justice at the university level, and our students need to understand how un-democratic and perniciously vile the prison system has been to persons of color and therefore think seriously about flipping our current prison system on its ear to revamp or eliminate. Angela Davis is brilliant in her historical overview and assessment of the past and current criminal justice system, and her suggestions towards a way forward should be instituted yesterday! A wholly superior work.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Harry Mason. "Huh, radio. What's going on with that radio?" on June 25, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Angela Y. Davis is stunningly clear and straightforward in this set of interviews. The book reads much like a conversation, and Davis has a gift for letting the reader cut through the standard scholarly BS to join her in the struggle for interconnected freedom. Her insights are extraordinary. You wouldn't normally analyze the prison system as an evolved form of slavery and Jim Crow. Davis even goes as far as to find strong connections in the sexualized torture of prisoners at Abu Ghraib to similar sexualized lynchings of blacks. This book has opened my eyes to many things, including how sexual abuse is legalized in state penal systems, which then feeds into similar abuse in federal prisons and helps create a reciprocal relationship of the two facilitating each other's inhumane practices. She has a remarkable insight for connecting gender and sexual equality, racial equality, and economic equality together to solidify the fact that change must be unified across all levels. The criminal justice and penal institutions must be removed and replaced with something that is actually effective and moral. "Abolition democracy" is the name of this battle.

I enjoy how Davis's insights are reflected in another popular book recently released, "The New Jim Crow" by Michelle Alexander. Both books are must-reads, complete eye-openers. My suggestion: study both, and look at the world in new ways.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Opens our eyes to a different possibility of democracy that embodies ideals which help us become better human beings, not more wealthy capitalists.
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