Inside This Place, Not of It reveals some of the most egregious human rights violations within women’s prisons in the United States. In their own words, the thirteen narrators in this book recount their lives leading up to incarceration and their experiences inside—ranging from forced sterilization and shackling during childbirth, to physical and sexual abuse by prison staff. Together, their testimonies illustrate the harrowing struggles for survival that women in prison must endure.
As Michelle Alexander writes in her foreword: “These are personal narratives not only of suffering, but of human dignity and survival against all the odds. Hope flickers, even through recollections of painful childhoods, poverty, and domestic and institutional abuse. It is this hope that allows us to envision a way out, a path toward a more forgiving, compassionate, and caring society, one that attempts to solve social ills and improve the lives of our most vulnerable rather than sweeping them behind bars.”