Upcoming Event

Lauren-Brooke Eisen

presents

Inside Private Prisons:
An American Dilemma in the Age of Mass Incarceration

in conversation with CAROL S. STEIKER

This event includes a book signing

Date

Nov
10
Friday
November 10, 2017
3:00 PM

Location

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store and Harvard Criminal Justice Policy Program welcome senior counsel in the Brennan Center's Justice Program LAUREN-BROOKE EISEN for a discussion of her latest book, Inside Private Prisons: An American Dilemma in the Age of Mass Incarceration. She will be joined in conversation by Harvard Law School professor CAROL S. STEIKER.

About Inside Private Prisons

When the tough-on-crime politics of the 1980s overcrowded state prisons, private companies saw potential profit in building and operating correctional facilities. Today more than a hundred thousand of the 1.5 million incarcerated Americans are held in private prisons in twenty-nine states and federal corrections. Private prisons are criticized for making money off mass incarceration―to the tune of $5 billion in annual revenue. Based on Lauren-Brooke Eisen’s work as a prosecutor, journalist, and attorney at policy think tanks, Inside Private Prisons blends investigative reportage and quantitative and historical research to analyze privatized corrections in America.

From divestment campaigns to boardrooms to private immigration-detention centers across the Southwest, Eisen examines private prisons through the eyes of inmates, their families, correctional staff, policymakers, activists, Immigration and Customs Enforcement employees, undocumented immigrants, and the executives of America’s largest private prison corporations. Private prisons have become ground zero in the anti-mass-incarceration movement. Universities have divested from these companies, political candidates hesitate to accept their campaign donations, and the Department of Justice tried to phase out its contracts with them. On the other side, impoverished rural towns often try to lure the for-profit prison industry to build facilities and create new jobs. Neither an endorsement or a demonization, Inside Private Prisons details the complicated and perverse incentives rooted in the industry, from mandatory bed occupancy to vested interests in mass incarceration. If private prisons are here to stay, how can we fix them? This book is a blueprint for policymakers to reform practices and for concerned citizens to understand our changing carceral landscape.

Praise

"Inside Private Prisons is a careful, discerning assessment of our transformation of human incarceration into product and profit. Lauren-Brooke Eisen has compiled a definitive history of the phenomenon and has done so with more precision and equanimity than many of us can manage. If you want to intelligently argue about the modern prison-industrial complex, begin your studies here." —David Simon, creator of The Wire

"Lauren-Brooke Eisen’s study of private prisons is long awaited, powerful, and a critically important read for all citizens who seek to understand the relationship between profit and incarceration, and who hope to protect those who find themselves locked up in private facilities across the nation. From Colorado to South Texas to Wisconsin, and from CCA/CiviCore to GEO Group, Eisen takes us inside a world that many of us revile, but know virtually nothing about. She not only explodes many a myth about private prisons as well as detention centers but ultimately offers an invaluable blueprint for humanizing them. Like it or not, she points out, they are real places where real people, at least for the foreseeable future, will be contained." —Heather Ann Thompson, Pulitzer Prize–winning author of Blood in the Water

"Lauren-Brooke Eisen illuminates the history of private prisons and their place in the current environment and the future of mass incarceration in America―which we are trying to minimize. She incorporates individual interviews with a collation of quantitative data to strike a balance between fine detail and the big picture of the complex and still-evolving discourse of private corrections; a vital discussion for the future of our criminal justice and immigration policies." —Ernest Drucker, author of A Plague of Prisons: The Epidemiology of Mass Incarceration in America

Carol S. Steiker
Carol S. Steiker

Carol S. Steiker

Carol S. Steiker is the Henry J. Friendly Professor of Law and Faculty Co-Director of the Criminal Justice Policy Program at Harvard Law School. She specializes in the broad field of criminal justice, where her work ranges from substantive criminal law to criminal procedure to institutional design, with a special focus on issues related to capital punishment. Recent publications address topics such as the relationship of criminal justice scholarship to law reform, the role of mercy in the institutions of criminal justice, and the likelihood of nationwide abolition of capital punishment. Her most recent book, Courting Death: The Supreme Court and Capital Punishment, co-authored with her brother Jordan Steiker of the University of Texas School of Law, was published by Harvard University Press in November, 2016.

Lauren-Brooke Eisen
Lauren-Brooke Eisen

Lauren-Brooke Eisen

Lauren-Brooke Eisen is senior counsel in the Brennan Center's Justice Program, where she focuses on changing financial incentives in the criminal-justice system. Previously she was a senior program associate at the Vera Institute of Justice in the Center on Sentencing and Corrections, served as an assistant district attorney in New York City, worked as a reporter covering criminal justice in Laredo, Texas, and taught criminal justice at Yale College and the John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Harvard Book Store
1256 Massachusetts Ave., Cambridge, MA 02138

Walking from the Harvard Square T station: 2 minutes

As you exit the station, reverse your direction and walk east along Mass. Ave. in front of the Cambridge Savings Bank. Cross Dunster St. and proceed along Mass. Ave for three more blocks. You will pass Au Bon Pain, JP Licks, and TD Bank. Harvard Book Store is located at the corner of Mass. Ave. and Plympton St.

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Event Series: Friday Forum

Harvard Book Store's Friday Forum series takes place on Friday afternoons during the academic year as a way to highlight scholarly books in a wide range of fields, with a particular focus on local scholars. Friday Forums take place at 3pm in Harvard Book Store.

Event Co-Sponsor(s)

Harvard Criminal Justice Policy Program: http://cjpp.law.harvard.edu/

Purchase the Book
Featured event books will be for sale at the event for 20% off. Thank you for supporting this author series with your purchases.
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info@harvard.com

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