Theme Of Mass Incarceration In The Age Of Colorblindness By Michelle Alexander

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In her book The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness, author Michelle Alexander explores complex themes of oppression, discrimination, and how the United States criminal justice system has been disproportionately affecting Black communities for decades. Alexander outlines and analyzes the rise and fall of slavery, Jim Crow laws, and mass incarceration, as well as the War on Drugs and how the prison system continues to put Black men in bondage. Alongside this, she explores the limitations that incarceration places on Black men, the impact this has on their lives, and how society can work to combat the system. The novel is particularly relevant to the field of community psychology, as it highlights several ways that incarceration has affected the well-being and communities of those in bondage.
In the first chapter, “The Rebirth of Caste,” Alexander details the rise and fall of slavery and Jim Crow laws, as well as the emergence of its replacement: mass incarceration. In the era of chattel slavery in the emerging United States, the term “race” was born. By creating this social construct and deeming Africans as a lesser race and using pseudoscientific practices to falsely prove their inferiority, whites in America not only …show more content…

She argues that the widespread absenteeism of Black fathers is largely due to mass incarceration and that while Black leaders openly discuss the topic, none of them acknowledge the real reason: the criminal justice system. Alexander uses these truths to exemplify the fact that the prison system is segregation in disguise; it exiles Black men from society while they are behind bars and returns them to marginalized, segregated communities that have been ravaged by the War on

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