Pedagogy Readings

“‘Can a Poem Stop a Jail from Being Built?’ On Fugitive Counter-Ethics as Prison Pedagogy”

by Meghan McDowell & Alison Reed (selected reading from Prison Pedagogies)

 Prison Pedagogies

edited by Joe Lockard and Sherry Rankins-Robertson

The Undercommons

by Stefano Harney & Fred Moten

“Feeling Like a Failure: Teaching/Learning Abolition Through the Good, the Bad and the Innocent”

 by Jessi Lee Jackson & Erica R. Meiners

“‘We Are All for Diversity, but. . .’: How Faculty Hiring Committees Reproduce Whiteness and Practical Suggestions for How They Can Change”

by Özlem Sensoy & Robin DiAngelo


Abolition Readings

The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander

Are Prisons Obsolete? by Angela Y. Davis

Abolition Now!: Ten Years of Strategy and Struggle Against the Prison Industrial Complex

“Constructing a Criminal Justice System Free of Racial Bias: An Abolitionist Framework” by Dorothy E. Roberts

“What Does Prison Abolition Really Mean?” by Black & Pink


Zines & Pamphlets

Transformative Justice by Carmen Jones

Breaking Bars, Vol 1. by Humanities Behind Bars

Breaking Down Carceral Society & Building Another World by Alison Reed

Prison Strike 2018 by Fire Inside Collective




Criminal Queers



Related Organizations

Black & Pink

Critical Resistance

What Is the Prison Industrial Complex?

The prison industrial complex (PIC) is a term we use to describe the overlapping interests of government and industry that use surveillance, policing, and imprisonment as solutions to economic, social and political problems.Through its reach and impact, the PIC helps and maintains the authority of people who get their power through racial, economic and other privileges. There are many ways this power is collected and maintained through the PIC, including creating mass media images that keep alive stereotypes of people of color, poor people, queer people, immigrants, youth, and other oppressed communities as criminal, delinquent, or deviant. This power is also maintained by earning huge profits for private companies that deal with prisons and police forces; helping earn political gains for “tough on crime” politicians; increasing the influence of prison guard and police unions; and eliminating social and political dissent by oppressed communities that make demands for self-determination and reorganization of power in the US.  (Source: Critical Resistance,

What is Abolition?

PIC abolition is a political vision with the goal of eliminating imprisonment, policing, and surveillance and creating lasting alternatives to punishment and imprisonment.From where we are now, sometimes we can’t really imagine what abolition is going to look like. Abolition isn’t just about getting rid of buildings full of cages. It’s also about undoing the society we live in because the PIC both feeds on and maintains oppression and inequalities through punishment, violence, and controls millions of people. Because the PIC is not an isolated system, abolition is a broad strategy. An abolitionist vision means that we must build models today that can represent how we want to live in the future. It means developing practical strategies for taking small steps that move us toward making our dreams real and that lead us all to believe that things really could be different. It means living this vision in our daily lives.Abolition is both a practical organizing tool and a long-term goal.  (Source: Critical Resistance,