Texas Tough

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Historian Robert Perkinson gives a sweeping history of American imprisonment from the days of slavery to the present, and looks how Texas has influenced criminal justice severity, from executions to supermaxes, from prison privatization to sentencing juveniles as adults. His book Texas Tough: The Rise of America’s Prison Empire, shows how a plantation-based penal system became the national standard.


Robert Perkinson

Comments [6]

Connie Julian

Amalgam and everyone,
If you want to hear more jaw-dropping observations from Robert Perkinson and get a copy of "Texas Tough," come tonight at 7pm to his NYC Book Launch at Revolution Books, 146 W. 26th Street, Manhattan.

Jun. 24 2010 01:17 PM
Ana from NJ

Your guest is failing to mention that it is Texas where the PRIVATE prisons profit the most due to the importation of inmates from other states. Texas receives inmates from other parts of the country regardless of where they committed the crime. It is not that Texas is that violent. If there is no other democratic country that incarcerates as many people is because there are not that many countries that profit from incarcerating.

Jun. 24 2010 12:44 PM
Melinda Hunt from NYC

Does Texas also use the prison system to hide the bodies of their dis-functional healthcare system as happens in NYC?

Jun. 24 2010 12:37 PM
Mike C. from Tribeca

What ever happened to the idea that the death penalty was a "deterrent"? It certainly hasn't done that, and you sure don't hear the proponents say it anymore either.

Jun. 24 2010 12:35 PM
amalgam from Manhattan by day, NJ by night

When Mr. Perkinson dropped the fact that the incarceration rate for African American's in the USA is greater now than during the height of Jim Crow, my jaw nearly hit the floor. I knew that it was bad, but that is egregious.

How can anyone argue that racism (structural especially) isn't alive and well in America, embodied by the penal industrial complex.

Jun. 24 2010 12:32 PM
a g from n j

a few years ago i heard, a woman proclaim with the utmost of relish [from texas of course] that we "hang 'em high here".
i guess one of the reasons americans see the taliban as barbaric[they are of course] is that they mirror our own barbarism.

Jun. 24 2010 10:02 AM

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