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Why Mass Incarceration Matters to American History and to Teachers in American Schools Yale University March 19, 2014. Dr. Heather Ann Thompson Department of African American Studies Department of History Temple University. By 2008 in CT : 19, 413 locked behind bars in 18 facilities

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Dr. Heather Ann Thompson Department of African American Studies Department of History

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Why Mass Incarceration Matters to American History and to Teachers in American SchoolsYale University March 19, 2014

Dr. Heather Ann Thompson

Department of African American Studies

Department of History

Temple University


  • By 2008 in CT:

  • 19, 413 locked behind bars in 18 facilities

  • 1/33 residents under some form of correctional control


So?


Mass Incarceration Matters


The fate of our cities


The “Criminalization of Urban Space”


Why now?


LBJ and the Origins of the War on Crime

  • Law Enforcement Assistance Act, 1965

  • President's Commission on Law Enforcement and Administration of Justice, 1965

  • District of Columbia Crime Bill, 1967

  • Omnibus Crime Control and Safe Streets Act, 1968


What is old, is new


A Revolution in Drug Legislation


Lock up longer


Criminalizing Schools


The Fallout….


“Million Dollar Blocks”


Orphaning Children


Joblessness and Poverty


Welfare?


The Long Reach of the Carceral State


Rethinking the Fate of our Economy


Post-1865

Post-1965


Prison Labor


CORRECTIONAL ENTERPRISES OF CONNECTICUT


Brand new age of prison privatization for profit

Example: Corrections Corporation of America (CCA), Wackenhut, etc.


Urban and Labor Crisis


So, why haven’t we changed this?


Distorting Democracy


1974:

Richardson v. Ramirez

2006:

48 out of 50 states have a disfranchisement law on the books


The U.S. Census….


The U.S. Census….and Connecticut


Bottom line:

The majority-white residents of 7 state House districts in Connecticut get significantly more representation in the legislature because each of their districts includes more than 1,000 incarcerated people of color from other parts of the state. 


So what about everyone else?


Why Mass Incarceration Matters to American History and to Teachers in American SchoolsYale University March 19, 2014

Dr. Heather Ann Thompson

Department of African American Studies

Department of History

Temple University


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