Analysis Of ' New Jim Crow '

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Moreover, the facts that Alexander present in The New Jim Crow clashed with my view of the world in that although I appreciated the facts presented as the reality of what goes on in the world, it showed me that the through the laws enacted and through institutions, the society plays a role in creating and perpetuating the new caste system. This is evident when Alexander (2012) explains that the social racial control not only manifests itself through the justice system but also in the structure of the society, which is seen when those incarcerated have served their time and have been released from prison. She refers to Iron Marion’s “birdcage” metaphor to explain the lives of returning citizens and those on parole. The “birdcage metaphor…show more content…
It also restricts returning citizen from transforming their lives and instead puts them in a box, which often leads them to commit more crimes, be arrested, and receive another felon brand.
To effectively show how being branded a ‘felon’ affects returning citizens, Alexander (2012) writes on how regardless of whether they have committed a crime, black males in urban ghettos are treated like current or future criminals and that although one may eventually learn to cope with the stigma of criminality, like the stigma of race, the black males in the ghetto cannot fully escape the prison label. She puts the thoughts of returning citizens about the issue. She quotes one ex-offender who said, “The biggest hurdle you gotta get over when you walk out these prison gates is shame-that shame, that stigma, that label, that thing you wear around your neck saying, ‘I’m a criminal.’ It’s like a yoke around your neck, and it’ll drag you down, even kill you if you let it” (Alexander, 162). She continues by quoting the sentiment shared by an incarcerated woman who says, “When I leave here it will be very difficult for me in the sense that I’m a felon. That I will always be a felon…for me to leave here, it will affect my job, it will affect my education… People that are convicted of drug crimes can’t even get housing anymore…Yes, I did my prison time. How long are you going to punish me as a result of it?” (Alexander, 106). I like that Alexander includes real

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