Davidson, Josh - Rattling The Cages: Oral Histories of North American Political Prisoners

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Rattling The Cages: Oral Histories of North American Political Prisoners
by Josh Davidson (Editor)

420 Pages
Publisher: AK Press

Dispatches from behind bars. Political prisoners speak out.

“Calls upon us to imagine agents of history very differently from the ways we have been encouraged to think of powerful individuals as the motors of change.” —Angela Y. Davis, from the foreword

The official story is that the United States has no political prisoners. The reality is that there are hundreds of people rounded up, placed behind bars, and kept there for inordinately long sentences because of their political beliefs and activities. A project of abolitionist Josh Davidson and political prisoner Eric King, this book is filled with the experience and wisdom of over thirty current and former North American political prisoners. It provides first-hand details of prison life and the political commitments that continue to lead prisoners into direct confrontation with state authorities and institutions. The people Josh Davidson has interviewed include former radicals and Black liberation militants from the sixties and seventies, current antifascists, nonviolent Catholic peace activists, Animal and Earth Liberation Front saboteurs, and more. Their stories are moving, often tragic, yet deeply inspiring.

Collectively, these people have spent hundreds of years behind bars, and their experiences speak directly to the cruelty and immorality of our prison and so-called criminal justice systems. Although their sentences and the conditions they have endured vary dramatically, this wide range of voices come together to embody what bell hooks called “a legacy of defiance.” It is this legacy—of tirelessly struggling to right today’s wrongs and create a better tomorrow—that the prison system tries, yet fails, to extinguish.

Royalties from book sales are split between the Anarchist Black Cross Federation’s Warchest, which provides financial support to currently imprisoned political prisoners, and the family of political prisoner Eric King.

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