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The Innocents [Hardcover]

Taryn Simon , Peter Neufeld , Barry Scheck
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)

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Book Description

1 May 2003
These are the faces and voices of the wrongfully convicted: fifty men and women who were imprisoned for years before proving their innocence with the help of The Innocence Project, which strives to transform criminal justice into a more equitable and reliable system. The personal testimonies of these victims of mistaken identity lay bare the paradox of innocence and imprisonment, the inability to recover the years stolen from them, and the state's unconscionable refusal to compensate them or ease their traumatic transition to civilian life. In full-colour throughout.

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 128 pages
  • Publisher: Umbrage Editions,US (1 May 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1884167187
  • ISBN-13: 978-1884167188
  • Product Dimensions: 1.6 x 30.2 x 24 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 702,168 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars You have to read this book 30 Jun 2011
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
I read the book. I donated money to The Innocents Project. [...] What else can you do, when you realise that there are still so many people in US jails because they can't afford to get the DNA testing that will prove they didn't do the crimes. It could be me, it could be you, but by chance it happens to be them.
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Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  7 reviews
8 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A Human Face on the flaws of our system 14 Dec 2003
By M. Desoer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
"The Innocents" is a jarring photo documentation of the issues raised by the scores of false convictions which have been overturned, primarily as a result of DNA evidence. As with Barry Scheck's book, "Actual Innocence", one of the most disturbing conclusions is that there are many more falsely-convicted individuals who never will be cleared because their alleged crimes did not leave DNA evidence behind.
The pictures in this book put a human face to the exonerated. The simple, direct accompanying text and quotes from the former prisoners tell the story over and over. I highly recommend this book in conjunction with Actual Innocence which discusses the causes of false convictions and attempts to articulate solutions to this ongoing problem with our legal system (even though it is one of the best legal systems in the world).
9 of 11 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful photographs of those falsely accused 19 Aug 2004
By John Kwok - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
There are emerging artists whose work tends to emphasize style over substance, of which there are many (Notable examples include Williamsburg, Brooklyn, NY artist Anissa Mack, perhaps best known for her performance piece "Pies for a Passerby" and most, though not all, of the emerging artists represented in the recent Brooklyn Museum exhibition "Open House: Working in Brooklyn".). And then there are those who can produce stylishly beautiful work, and make profound statements about culture, society, etc. through their art. Fellow Brunonian Taryn Simon - she studied photography primarily at the Rhode Island School of Design, widely regarded as America's premier art school, while still an undergraduate at Brown - is unquestionably one of these, with a distinctive documentary style which harkens back to Walker Evans's sympathetic black and white photographic portrayals of people in Depression-era America. However, here Simon has worked deliberately in color, using the conventions of commercial fashion photography to create memorable images. Hers is a splendid, mature body of work, replete with much empathy for her subjects; former convicts who were falsely accused and convicted. Each photograph is accompanied with commentary from the two attorneys in charge of the Innocence Project, Barry Scheck and Peter Neufeld. Through their Innocence Project, attorneys Scheck and Neufeld have freed scores of people who were wrongly convicted. Simon received a Guggenheim Fellowship in Photography for this project; an award normally given to artists who are in mid-career or further along, not to an emerging artist. Simon's work has been exhibited at New York City's International Center of Photography and P. S. 1 Contemporary Art Center; an international tour of these photographs had its first stop at P. S. 1. As both a fellow alumnus of her college and a fellow photographer, I eagerly look forward to yet another impressive body of work from Ms. Simon.
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Subject of national debate 31 Oct 2003
By Andrea Dunlap - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
The failings of the criminal justice system and the use of the death penalty in this country are currently under close scrutiny and an important topic of public debate. The images and voices of The Innocents give faces and stories to the statistics and serve as a compelling documentation of a nationwide problem. Royalties for this book benefit the Innocence Project, New York, which has led the way in post-DNA exonerations in America.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars mandatory reading for anyone in the judicial system 4 Mar 2004
By Logical Libertine - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book is phenomenal. Not only in its ironic ability to tell these tales, but for also revealing the clear errors that the judicial system cranks out. Anyone interested in those who are falsely convicted should check out [...]
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 4 stars: a SOFTcover edition cost self and Mother Earth less 8 Dec 2004
By Vegetarian Pacifist - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Medium: Book

ISBN: 1-884167-18-7

Book Type: Hardcover with Jacket

Pages: 112 pages, 104 4-color illustrations

Size: 12.5 x 10 inches

Item #: 11430

Name: The Innocents

About this book...

This compelling book of photographs and interviews with the wrongfully convicted by Taryn Simon includes commentary and case profiles by Peter Neufeld and Barry Scheck. The failings of the criminal justice system and the use of the death penalty in this country are currently under close scrutiny and an important topic of public debate. The images and voices of The Innocents mark this historic turning point in America.

The Innocence Project, founded by leading civil rights attorneys Peter Neufeld and Barry Scheck, is responsible for most of the postconviction DNA exonerations in the United States today, many of which are included in this book. On the ten-year anniversary of its founding, the Project continues to free the innocent, striving to transform criminal justice into a more equitable and reliable system.

Photographer Taryn Simon brings us face-to-face with individuals falsely accused and convicted. While mugshots and photoarrays are used to condemn and imprison these innocents, Simon has turned the camera around to document these victims of mistaken identity and perverted justice. Simon photographed the wrongfully convicted at locations that were crucial in these legal cases: the scene of misindentification, the scene of arrest, the alibi location, or the scene of the crime. Through Simon's interviews with each, the men and women in this book confront the paradox of innocence and imprisonment, the inability to recover the years stolen from them, and the states' unconscionable refusal to compensate them or ease their traumatic transition to civilian life.
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