Jason Kamras and The New Jim Crow

Last week the superintendent of Richmond Public Schools tweeted praise of Richmond’s local jail, the Richmond City Justice Center. This tweet landed in a moment when Richmond’s attention is turned toward school funding and school facilities, and Karmas’s tweet notes that our jails receive funding that our schools do not. …

Ethnographies of European Policing

Angela Davis spoke at VCU last week, and in conjunction with her visit I read her new book Freedom is a Constant Struggle. In it, as in her talk, she explores american incarceration as an exportable product. I tend to be very hesitant to conflate American carceral culture to security cultures globally, simply …

Reading for Better Futures

Some time back my colleague Courtnie Wolfgang shared with me an incredible drive of materials on incarceration and detention of juveniles. This unexpected generosity left me thinking about the value of shared libraries and advancement of knowledge. I’ve heard a number of particularly heated arguments lately among scholars employed at …

Criminal Justice Reform and Rights Restoration in Virginia: a Guide to Pestering your Legislators

Virginia’s General Assembly is in session! While demanding action from your legislators is fun, it’s not always super easy. Our legislative process is baroque at best, and often designed in such a way that it’s hard to know how to even start demanding the change you want to see. We …

Breakbeat Poetry

This week my Culture | Counterculture class is set to start reading The Breakbeat Poets, which offers me something I haven’t had in a while: poetry. I spent a lot of my younger life on poetry, but the past few years have left me uncertain where we stand. Poetry first took me to …