Collection of essays and art by scholars, artists and activists both in and out of prison that reveal the many dimensions of women’s incarcerated experiences.
Offering nuanced portraits of women's lives inside razor wire and prison walls, Razor Wire Women puts incarcerated women in dialogue with scholars, artists, educators and activists who live outside of prisons but work on issues connected to the prison industrial complex. Women make up the fastest-growing group of the U.S. prison population, yet prison scholarship largely overlooks the struggles of incarcerated women, and their voices are often silenced both in and out of the prison infrastructure. From the vantage points of those both inside and outside of prisons, this collection of essays and art illuminates many of the distinct experiences and concerns of incarcerated women, including those of girls in prison, abuse and rape, the policing of women, incarcerated motherhood, mental health issues in prisons, incarcerated women's artistic and cultural production, and prisons' impact on families, health, and sexuality. Combining the transcendence, hope and clarity of art with powerful analytical and conceptual tools, Razor Wire Women reveals the gendered dimensions of the incarceration now experienced by a growing number of women in the U.S.
Jodie Michelle Lawston is Assistant Professor of Women's Studies at California State University San Marcos and the author of Sisters Outside: Radical Activists Working for Women Prisoners, also published by SUNY Press. Ashley E. Lucas is Assistant Professor of Dramatic Art at the University of North Carolina and the author and performer of the play Doin' Time: Through the Visiting Glass.