American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment

American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment

A groundbreaking and brave inside reckoning with the nexus of prison and profit in America in one Louisiana prison and over the course of our country's history. In 2014, Shane Bauer was hired for $9 an hour to work as an entry-level prison guard at a private prison in Winnfield, Louisiana. An award-winning investigative journalist, he used his real name; there was no meani A groundbreaking and brave inside reckoning with the nexus of prison and profit in America in one Louisiana prison an...

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Title:American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment
Author:Shane Bauer
Rating:
Genres:Nonfiction
ISBN:American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment
ISBN
Edition Language:English
Format Type:Hardcover
Number of Pages:318 pages pages

American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment Reviews

  • Socraticgadfly
    Oct 10, 2018
    Simply fantastic. If you liked Bauer's reporting in Mother Jones, you'll love this greatly expanded story about his time undercover at the privately-owned Winn Correctional Unit in Louisiana. Winn is owned by the then-named CCA, now rebranded as CoreCivic. It's one of the two bi...
  • Whitney
    Nov 25, 2018
    Really exciting reporting. This book is full of both historical and contemporary realities that we conveniently and literally shut away and try not to think about. ...
  • Diane
    Jun 29, 2019
    This is an impressive piece of undercover reporting by Shane Bauer on the brutality of private prisons in America. Bauer worked for several months as a guard at a Louisiana prison, and during his time there he saw first-hand how the private prison system is incentivized to not care for...
  • Alex Givant
    Jul 02, 2019
    Excellent book about USA private prisons run by CCA (original article can be found here). The book contains updated version plus history of private prisons in USA. Highly recommended! ...
  • Mehrsa
    Dec 07, 2018
    Really interesting project, but ultimately not substantive. The most interesting bits are the parts that he goes back in history, but it's all already written in Slavery By Another Name and the New Jim Crow. The personal account is very interesting--and so is the fact that Bauer himsel...
  • Kelly
    Feb 14, 2019
    The central indictment against America's penal system is the premise of this book: that it is so unaccountably insular that the only way to know its true nature is for someone to go deep undercover. Shane Bauer didn?t hide his identity and endeavored to deal honestly with his colleag...
  • Stephen Durrant
    Jan 19, 2019
    I confess to be growing tired of the every-other-chapter style of nonfiction, which one finds employed these days in some fiction as well. Here, one chapter presents Shane Bauer's story of going undercover as a prison guard to get the inside dope, so to speak, on a privatized prison in...
  • Darlene
    May 13, 2019
    Shane Bauer, the author of this book, 'American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment', writes articles about criminal justice for 'Mother Jones' magazine. His name may also be familiar because Bauer, his partner Sarah Shourd and friend Josh Fattal spe...
  • Alicia
    Feb 18, 2019
    Excellent. Amazing reporting, both historical information and also Bauer's experiences in Winn Correctional. Highly recommend. ...
  • Jillian Doherty
    Feb 16, 2018
    American Prison is an eye-opening exploration of a deeply broken system. Revealing not only a look at the inside workings of our prison systems, but also facility issues; Mr. Bauer went undercover as a corrections officer within a Louisiana prison. This perspective is complicated by h...
  • Eric
    Feb 02, 2019
    An eye-opening report on the history of for-profit prisons in the U.S., half history an half first-person investigative reporting. It's all fairly disturbing. And absorbing. Bauer's adventure as an undercover reporter working for four months as a prison corrections officer would mak...
  • Jenna
    Apr 03, 2019
    If you know that 22% of the world's prisoners are in American prisons, even though Americans comprise just 4.4% of the population, you might have wondered why that is. Is it because Americans are more likely to be criminals? Is the American justice system harsher than that in other cou...
  • Larry Bassett
    Sep 21, 2018
    I sincerely wish that I thought this book was better. It is about the privatization of prisons and prisons for profit. The most recent focus of prisons for profit has been its expansion in the immigration detention facility market. After the Obama administration withdrew the federal go...
  • Kelli
    Mar 03, 2019
    I have to stop reading books like this. I was unaware that some prisons are privately operated for profit. Seriously?! How could anyone fail to see the glaring conflict there? If every prisoner is putting money in someone?s pocket, where is the incentive to rehabilitate? In 2018,...
  • ♥ Sandi ❣
    Dec 21, 2018
    4 stars A prison in Louisiana, a journalist undercover. This combination makes for a compelling read. This book takes you on a 4 month journey into a privately run for-profit prison, not state or federally run, but one ran by a private corporation. Wages are low, staff is almost...
  • Madeline
    Aug 04, 2018
    Bauer took a brave step by becoming a prison guard to experience first-hand what it is like inside of America's privately run prisons. He chose to become a prison guard at a CCA-run private prison in the small town of Winn, Louisiana. He works there for a few months, and witnesses dail...
  • Loring Wirbel
    Dec 03, 2018
    Despite the heavy accolades for this book and my interest in the subject matter, I was tempted in the first 50 pages to give the book a mere three stars for two reasons. First, the concept of a journalist going undercover to work a story has always struck me as problematic in some sens...
  • Diane Payne
    Sep 30, 2018
    American Prison is not an easy read but it is an essential read. Earlier, I had read Shane Bauer's essay about his undercover reporting of prisons in Mother Jones and knew I had to read this book. Too often, we don't pay attention to the fact that as voters and citizens we do have a vo...
  • Emmkay
    Apr 23, 2019
    Essential reading. I first heard Shane Bauer on a podcast, talking about the time he spent, as an undercover investigative reporter for Mother Jones magazine, working in a privatized prison in Louisiana. It was compelling listening, and his book on the same topic is both sobering and e...
  • Antonia
    Jan 31, 2019
    This here is the type of journalism I most admire -- brave, risky, bold. Shane Bauer is an undercover reporter who got a job as a guard in private prison in Louisiana. A job starting at $9 per hour! 9 freaking dollars an hour in a facility with over 1000 prisoners! I bet some states ha...
  • Alex
    Jan 17, 2019
    3.5 Another one of the NY Times Top 10 of 2018, Bauer's account of working in a private prison is quite insightful, especially when delving into the post-slavery use of prison labour in the American South. That said, I found the details provided were at times too much, unessential, ...
  • Jennifer
    Dec 22, 2018
    This book really made me angry - so disgusting how privatizing prison is all about profit and not the people. ...
  • Angie
    Sep 21, 2018
    Bauer's book has convinced me that private prisons have an awful legacy and are operated poorly because they are operated with en eye to saving every possible cent for profit rather than to make the prison better. He alternates between history of private prisons in general and his expe...
  • Amy
    Jan 19, 2019
    This book is worth your time. Not only did Bauer write about his undercover work as a corrections officer, but he also discussed the history of privatized prisons. This industry has always been about the money and has never been about the PEOPLE who live and work within the industry. ...
  • David Quijano
    Feb 17, 2019
    I first saw ?American Prison? by Shane Bauer on the NY Times Top 10 of 2018 list. I put all ten books on my to-read list, assuming the New York Times would only recommend exceptional books. My assumption was bolstered by the fact that its Goodreads rating was 4.25, which I would co...
  • Shelley
    Dec 14, 2018
    I was worried that I wouldn't be able to sustain much interest in anything related to the American criminal justice system, having recently finished the rather lackluster and frustrating third season of Serial. Plus, though I am not completely devoid of the milk of human kindness, the ...
  • Esther Espeland
    Jan 09, 2019
    Super good, learned so much! Liked how the chapters bat Winn correctional facility were interspersed with historical analysis ...
  • Kimber
    Mar 23, 2019
    It begs the question, why work as a prison guard under such dangerous conditions for $9 an hour, when you could just as soon work at McDonalds? Journalist Shane Bauer goes undercover as a prison guard in a privatized prison in Louisiana where they pay $9 an hour to just about any...
  • The Nerdwriter
    Jun 03, 2019
    This one made me angry. Before reading Shane Bauer's American Prison, I had only a limited understanding of the private prison industry. I knew of its unsavory reputation, as many do, but the sickening details from this undercover report shocked and angered me. Bauer -- not a year ...
  • Kati Garness
    Feb 22, 2019
    A glimpse into the grim reality of prisons today and in particular the conditions caused by for-profit, private prisons caring more about the bottom line than the people in their care. Shane Bauer gives both the historical context of making money off of prisoners and the current practi...