The New Jim Crow : Mass Incarceration Essay

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Michelle Alexander’s book, The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, examines mass incarceration in the United States, why the criminal justice system works the way it does towards minorities, the detriments associated with mass incarceration as it relates to offenders, and much more. In the introduction of her book, Alexander immediately paints the harsh reality of mass incarceration with the story of Jarvious Cotton who is denied the right to vote among other rights because he, “has been labeled as a felon and is currently on parole” (1). Other information Alexander presents in her introduction are her qualifications as an author of the book, and gives a brief summary of each chapter and how each one is laid out. Her qualifications are she is African-American civil rights attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) and is also an Associate Professor at the University of Stanford Law School. From a critical standpoint, Alexander seems very qualified to write on the topic, being part of the marginalized group and also being an expert in the legal field of which the topic covers, enhances her ethos to where one could consider her an expert in mass incarceration topics, as they relate to African-Americans. Overall, the introduction of her book does a great job starting out giving a stark reality of topic at hand, giving brief statistical references about mass incarceration in the United States, and giving an outline for her book. The

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