|Resource List - Torture in U.S. Prisons|
NRCAT wants to make this resource list as useful as possible to people working to end the use of torture in U.S. prisons.
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NRCAT also recommends these two websites as excellent sources of information on solitary confinement in U.S. prisons:
Resource List for Torture in U.S. Prisons
General News Articles - Other Publications - National Institute of Corrections - Audio/Video Resources - Other Resources - Maine's Solitary Confinement Legislation - Illinois Supermax Prison Resources
Full Resource List:
Download a pdf version of this list (updated 12/16/11), which is updated and expanded more frequently than the list shown below.New additions to the list are highlighted in yellow.
"Dept. of Amplification: Charles Dickens on Solitary Confinement," by Mary Hawthorne, The New Yorker, March 24, 2009.
"Hellhole: Is Long Term Solitary Confinement Torture?" by Atul Gawande, The New Yorker, March 30, 2009.
"Immigrant Detainees Staging Hunger Strikes to Protest Deplorable Confinement," by Aura Bogado, Alternet, August 7, 2009.
"2 Nuns from Sisters of Mercy Focus on Jailed Immigrants," by Margaret Ramirez, The Chicago Tribune, August 9, 2009.
"Prisoners Rights," Editorial, The New York Times, September 23, 2009.
"Detainees Face Severe Conditions if Moved to U.S.," by Peter Finn, The Washington Post, October 4, 2009.
"Is it Time to Ban Solitary Confinement?" by Julia Dahl, The Crime Report, October 12, 2009.
"Treatment Units for Mentally Ill Inmates on Hold," by Jonathan Saltzman, The Boston Globe, November 10, 2009.
"State Correction Budget is Soaring, New Study Says," by Jonathan Saltzman, The Boston Globe, December 3, 2009.
"America's Supermax Prisons Do Torture," by Kiilu Nyasha, San Francisco BayView, December 9, 2009.
"After 35 Years in Prison, Redemption in Michigan," by Jacki Lyden, National Public Radio, December 20, 2009.
"Locking Down the Mentally Ill," by James Ridgeway and Jean Casella, The Crime Report, February 17, 2010.
"Terrible Tommy Spends 27 Years in Solitary Confinement," by Stephanie Chen, CNN Justice, February 25, 2010.
"The Anti-Supermax Battle Broadens," by Lance Tapley, The Crime Report, May 16, 2010.
“Crime and Punishment in America: Rough Justice,” The Economist, July 22, 2010.
“Isolation at Tamms Leads to Mental Illness, Judge Rules,” by George Pawlaczyk and Beth Hundsdorfer, Belleville News-Democrat, July 25, 2010.
“Psychiatrists Decry Punishment That Isolates Prisoners,” by Rich Daly, Psychiatric News, September 3, 2010, Volume 45 Number 17 Page 4
“What will future generations condemn us for?” by Kwame Anthony Appiah, Washington Post, September 26, 2010.
“Solitary Men: Does prolonged isolation drive death row prisoners insane?” by Dave Mann, The Texas Observer, November 10, 2010.
(alphabetical by author)
Eisenman, Stephen. "The Resistable Rise and Predictable Fall of the U.S. Supermax." Monthly Review, 2009.
Forman, James Jr. "Exporting Harshness: How the War on Crime Helped Make the War on Terror Possible." Georgetown Law Faculty Working Papers (2009).
Haney, Craig. "A Culture of Harm - Taming the Dynamic of Cruelty in Supermax Prisons." Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 35 (2008): 956-984.
Kamel, Rachel., Kerness, Bonnie. "The Prison Inside the Prison: Control Units, Supermax Prisons, and Devices of Torture." American Friends Service Committee, Justice Visions Briefing Paper (2003).
Kerness, Bonnie., Ehehosi, Masai. "Torture in U.S. Prisons: Evidence of U.S. Human Rights Violations." American Friends Service Committee, New York Metropolitan Region Criminal Justice Program (2001).
Kupers, Terry. "Beyond Supermax Administrative Segregation: Mississippi's Experience Rethinking Prison Classification and Creating Alternative Mental Health Programs." Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 36 (2009): 2-14.
Kupers, Terry. "Prison and the Decimation of Pro-Social Life Skills." The Trauma of Psychological Torture, ed. Almerindo Ojeda, Vol. 5 (2008).
Kupers, Terry. "What to Do With the Survivors? Coping With the Long-Term Effects of Isolated Confinement." Criminal Justice and Behavior, Vol. 35 No. 8 (2008): 1005-1016.
Lobel, Jules. "Prolonged Solitary Confinement and the Constitution." University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, Legal Studies Research Paper Series, No. 2009-19.
Sparkman, Emmitt. “Mississippi DOC’s Emmitt Sparkman on reducing the use of segregation in prisons.” Vera Institute of Justice (2008).
National Institute of Corrections: Technical Assistance, Information, and Training for Adult Corrections, October 1, 2009 to September 30, 2010.
National Institute of Corrections - U.S. Code:
(alphabetical by source)
American Civil Liberties Union: "Reckoning With Torture," ACLU Youtube Channel.
American Civil Liberties Union: "Congressmen Bobby Scott & Keith Ellison Read a Firsthand Account of an Interrogation," ACLU Youtube Channel.
American Civil Liberties Union: “David Fathi Radio Appearance on KGNU”
American Friends Service Committee: "Cruel and Inhuman," video produced by StopMax Project.
California Prison Focus: Maximum Security University, video directed by Tom Quinn. This 47-minute video describes insitutionalized violence in two California prisons: Corcoran and Pelican Bay. It provides a critique of both the prison-mandated yard integration policies and of four deaths that occurred at the hands of the guards between 1989-1993. For more information contact NRCAT staffat 202-547-1920.
Information Clearing House: "Torture Inc. America's Brutal Prisons," by Deborah Davies, March 28, 2005.
National Geographic: "Solitary Confinement," April 11, 2010.
Soundprint: "Survivors," radio show hosted by Lisa Simeone, April 2, 2010.
60 Minutes: “A Clean Version of Hell,” June 21, 2009.
American Friends Service Committee: Survivors Manual: Survival in Solitary
(alphabetical by source)
American Friends Service Committee: Inalienable Rights - Applying International Human Rights Standards to the U.S. Criminal Justice System.
American Friends Service Committee - Prison Watch Project: "Talking about Torture: How Can We Learn to Speak About the Unspeakable?" by Bonnie Kerness, 2008.
International CURE (Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants): CURE 5/15 - Fifteen Key Recommendations for Social Development and Social Integration in Justice and Prison.
"Is Solitary Torture?": A Powerpoint by George Swanson
National Religious Campaign Against Torture: Executive Summary on Solitary Confinement in U.S. Prisons, by Rev. Sala W.J. Nolan Gonzales, April 2009.
National Religious Campaign Against Torture: "Seven Keys to U.S. Prisons," presentation by Corey Weinstein, November 2009.
National Religious Campaign Against Torture: "Seven Keys to U.S Prisons," PowerPoint presentation by Corey Weinstein, November 2009.
New York City Bar Association: “Supermax Confinement in U.S. Prisons,” by The Committee on International Human Rights, September 2011
People's Law Office: "Chicago Police Torture Ringleader Indicted," by G. Flint Taylor, January/February 2009.
People's Law Office: Draft Statute - Criminalizing Acts of Torture Committed by Law Enforcement Officers in the United States, by Joey Mogul, January 26, 2009.
Solitary Confinement: “Sourcebook on Solitary Confinement,” by Sharon Shalev, October 2008.
Solitary Watch (blog): compiled and edited by James Ridgeway, Jean Casella and the Virginia Capital Case Clearinghouse.
Solitary Watch: “Voices from the ‘Torture Chambers’: Solitary Confinement and Political Repressions,” by Bonnie Kerness, July 11, 2010.
Solitary Watch: “Fatal Flaws in the Colorado Solitary Confinement Study,” January 11, 2011.
War Resisters League: "Control Units: Illegal Torture Not Just for Guantanamo," by Bonnie Kerness.
Washington Correctional Center at Shelton, WA: Our Standard About the Treatment of Offenders.
U.S. District Court (Southern District of Illinois): TAMMS Solitary Confinement Case Westefer v. Snyder, (S. Ill. 2010)
(alphabetical by source)
Bangor Daily News: "Solitary Pitfalls," Editorial, November 20, 2009.
Bangor Daily News: "Clergy Urges Solitary Confinement Limits ," by Kevin Miller, February 24, 2010.
Maine Civil Liberties Union: Facts About Solitary Confinement in Maine Prisons.
Maine Civil Liberties Union: Statement of Support for LD1611.
Maine Civil Liberties Union: What LD 1611 Does.
Maine State Legislature: An Act To Ensure Humane Treatment for Special Management Prisoners; HP1139, LD 1611, item 1, 124th Maine State Legislature; Drafted by Representative Schatz.
Portland Press Herald: "Our View: Overuse of prison isolation issue that should not go away," Editorial, April 8, 2010
Portland Press Herald: "Prison Bill hearing Pits 'Solitary' and 'Isolation' ," by Ethan Wilensky-Lanford, February 18, 2010.
Portland Press Herald: "Solitary Confinement Worsens Mental Illness and Amounts to Torture," Richard Killmer, February 12, 2010.
The Maine Public Broadcasting Network: "Former Prisoners Describe Psychiatric Toll of Solitary Confinement," Susan Sharon, February 18, 2010.
The Maine Public Broadcasting Network: "Religious Leaders Back Solitary Confinement Limits," by Susan Sharon, February 23, 2010.
The Portland Phoenix: "A 'moral victory' against supermax torture" by Lance Tapley, April 15, 2010.
The Portland Phoenix: "Maine Tortures Women, Too," by Lance Tapley, March 2010.
The Portland Phoenix: “Reform comes to the Supermax” by Lance Tapley, May 25, 2011.
The Portland Phoenix: "Screams from Solitary," by Lance Tapley, February 17, 2010.
The Portland Phoenix: "The Cost of Torture," by Lance Tapley, February 25, 2010.
(alphabetical by source)
Belleville News-Democrat: “Isolation at Tamms Leads to Mental Illness, Judge Rules,” by George Pawlaczyk and Beth Hundsdorfer , July 25, 2010.
Belleville News-Democrat: "Trapped in TAMMS: In Illinois' Only Supermax Facility, Inmates Are In Cells 23 Hours a Day," by George Pawlaczyk and Beth Hundsdorfer, August 4, 2009.
Belleville News-Democrat: "Trapped in TAMMS" series, includes more than one dozen articles and investigative reports.
TAMMS Year Ten: Coalition that organizes to win legislative oversight and administrative reforms at TAMMS supermax prison.