This book combines anger with accuracy. Those at the receiving end of the law's sanctions always know more about the law than the rest of us, however learned and well qualified we may be. When you find someone who, like Mumia makes it his business to learn and know the law and who, with this learning, can put their finger on the often blatant intellectual dishonesty and bias of the courts and judges, then you have an outstanding text book. This is such a book. More: http://www.globalwomenstrike.net/content/praise-jailhouse-lawyers-prisoners-defending-prisoners-v-usa --Ian Macdonald QC
Jailhouse Lawyers enables the public to glimpse a crucial aspect of the growing movement against the prison-industrial complex hidden by high walls and steel doors, one which Mumia knows inside out. Mumia uncovers what extraordinary lives of resistance some prisoners have created from need, imagination, and determination. Drawing on his experience, compassion, and extensive correspondence, he sketches portraits of great jailhouse lawyers focussed on beating justice out of the system. Often spurred by the need to repair the damage to their own cases inflicted by lazy and uncaring street lawyers, Mumia describes how jailhouse lawyers learn the law, the precedents, the jargon, and mount an often formidable legal defense. In the process they carve out a life for themselves, a victory in itself. More: http://www.globalwomenstrike.net/content/praise-jailhouse-lawyers-prisoners-defending-prisoners-v-usa --Selma James, from the Introduction to the UK Edition
Jailhouse Lawyers is not a collection of legal anecdotes, a compendium of courtroom gloating, but a rare glimpse into the motives and struggles of the individual prisoners who refuse to surrender to the State which is attempting to crush them. Shorn of worldly honours and bereft of any social status, and squeezing the most benefit from the most meagre resources jailhouse lawyers are a new breed of legal gladiators. They are an increasing force in changing the penal landscape of the nation that incarcerates more people than any other. Mumia and the American experience illuminate what is possible for jailhouse lawyers in Britain, who are also turning to the law to defend themselves against the increasingly oppressive security paradigm. They do so knowing the personal risks and with little support, least of all from groups which dress themselves in the clothing of prison reform, accept honours and silver; and are enamoured with gracing the courtyards of power and publicity. Jailhouse lawyers foment hope for change, which everywhere rests in the hands of prisoners. More: http://www.globalwomenstrike.net/content/praise-jailhouse-lawyers-prisoners-defending-prisoners-v-usa --Ben Gunn, jailhouse lawyer, in prison for 30 years
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About the Author
Mumia Abu-Jamal is an award-winning journalist and author. Live From Death Row, one of his two bestsellers, brilliantly portrays the deep impact of death row on individual prisoners. In 1981 he was elected president of the Philadelphia chapter of the Association of Black Journalists. His 1982 trial and conviction for murder have been widely condemned for constitutional violations as well as for blatant racism. Throughout almost three decades on death row, journalist and jailhouse lawyer Mumia, as he is known to millions, has consistently fought for his freedom and against all injustice. He holds a BA from Goddard College and an MA from California State University, Dominguez Hills.
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