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Live from Death Row Paperback – June 1, 1996

4.3 out of 5 stars 53 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Sentenced to death in 1982 for the murder of a police officer, after a trial that has since attracted considerable criticism, African American journalist Abu-Jamal presents a collection of his prison writings.
Copyright 1996 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Library Journal

After a bizarre shooting of a policeman and an equally bizarre trial, Abu-Jamal was convicted of murder and sentenced to Pennsylvania's death row. Twelve years later, he is still there, although new evidence has been found to support his innocence. This volume is a collection of his writings, which, for the most part, document the atrocities of prison life. The reader may sympathize with Abu-Jamal's plight and even question his guilt in the shooting but will probably find this book fragmented and sketchy. Instead of a continuous narrative, Abu-Jamal offers brief notes drawn together under one theme. Good prose is drowned by ravings and accusations. One can see why Abu-Jamal's commentaries on National Public Radio were abruptly canceled. The book will probably not be of value to public or academic libraries. It might be of use in correctional facility libraries where readers are interested in the case.?Frances Sandiford, Green Haven Correctional Facility Lib., Stormville, N.Y.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Harper Perennial (June 1, 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0380727668
  • ISBN-13: 978-0380727667
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.5 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 6.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (53 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #105,153 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Growing up in Philadelphia I formed my negative opinions of Mumia and his case without ever having researched his history myself. However, after the most recent Free Mumia march in Philly, I felt obligated to look into the case that riled people into such a frenzy. What I found was a case based on shaky ground at best, making it a jewel for human right activists. However, I still was not convinced either way of Mumia's innocence or his guilt. I picked up Live From Death Row hoping to develop a more informed opinion, one that was supported by my own experience with Mumia's writing. Surprisingly however, I found that the book did not deal with Mumia's case at all and instead focused on the social injustices that are acted out in our prisons every day. Mumia's anecdotes were insightful and intelligent, leading the reader to keep flipping page after page. At the very least, the book was an educational review of life in prison and deep look into the soul of a death row inmate. While I finished the book no more enlightened on the Mumia innocence/guilt question than when I started, I got a well written snap shot of life on death row. Mumia's writing will keep your interest and his intelligence and love for life shine through.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mumia Abu-Jamal is an award winning journalist who became a political prisoner when he was convicted for murder based on tampered evidence, police misconduct and determination of the state to keep him quiet. The state failed in that attempt. He has written many brilliant books read all around the world. He is commonly called 'The Voice of the Voiceless'.

He rarely writes about himself, but comments on life on death row, about current affairs, about the need for people to come together to change the world. I would recommend this book to anyone looking to find an understanding of why the world is the way it is today and how to change it.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I found this book very informative and interesting. It didn't really convince me if Mumia Abu-Jamal was innocent or guilty of the charge in which he was imprisoned but it did convince me that prison and the whole criminal system are racist, unfair and immoral. It also made me wonder about real lawyers too. What are they really here to do? He did explain how innocent people can be incarcerated and he described how prisoners are often terribly mistreated.
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Format: Paperback
This book is masterfully written. It paints the grim picture of America's prison community, while still maintaining the humanity of the men and women inside of it, and does a wonderful job of pointing out the flaws to the American Judicial System. I highly recommend this book to anyone even vaguely interested in the subject!
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Delivered on everything it promised .it was real, honest and touched a nerve that made your heart pound. Mr. Abu-Jamal manages to write with such meaning and purpose despite the dire circumstances that he must face day to day. If this book doesn't open society's eyes about the unjust corrupt justice system not to mention the racism still very much alive in our cities.....nothing will.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Mumia is a controversial figure but his analysis of the death penalty in the United States is a biting one. It is difficult to take the United States government seriously when it demonizes other countries while it has the largest prison population in history. Mumia explains his interesting story and the horrors that he has witnessed in a max security prison.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a brutally honest book of the conditions of prisons in America. If you are looking for a book about Mumias case then this isn't for you but I still suggest that you purchase it because whether you feel he is innocent or guilty it is an amazing read. I'm looking into which Mumia book I should purchase next!
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Format: Paperback
A Case for Reasonable Doubt a DVD of the 60 Minutes show about Mumia's case. (A really good film!)

I've been getting most of my info from 2 organizations working to Free Mumia:

Refuse & Resist! and Partisan Defense Committee. My understanding of what Mumia really wants most is to get out of jail.

The organizations say the only way to accomplish this is by drawing International Media attention to the issues of his case.

I spoke to a woman this summer from Philadelphia who said; "They will never let Mumia out of jail!" My intention is not to convert anyone, insult ugly ignorance nor incite the worst case sceneio. My heart song is merely to connect like minded individuals, shedding some positive light and love, on the serious issues of racism, the death penalty and injustice; and hopefully getting media attention, highlighting the hundreds of millions of people around the world who care about Mumia's Freedom.

WHY IS THIS CASE SO IMPORTANT?
"The case of Mumia Abu-Jamal has become a battleground in society because it concentrates so many of the reactionary elements riding high in the US today - the criminalization of black men, the suppression of dissent, the expanded death penalty, the gutting of defendant's rights, and a whole political atmosphere of blame and punishment aimed at the most oppressed. This is a dangerous time for the people, and no time to think that the government will back off from killing Mumia because they are 'too busy' with other problems, their war on the world and the shredding of civil liberties. Mumia is one of their problems.
Read more ›
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