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Doing Time in the Depression – Everyday Life in Texas and California Prisons - NYU Press Scholarship Online
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Doing Time in the Depression: Everyday Life in Texas and California Prisons

Ethan Blue


As banks crashed, belts tightened, and cupboards emptied across the country, American prisons grew fat. This book tells the story of the 1930s as seen from the cell blocks and cotton fields of Texas and California prisons, state institutions that held growing numbers of working people from around the country and the world—overwhelmingly poor, disproportionately non-white, and displaced by economic crisis. The book paints a vivid portrait of everyday life inside Texas and California's penal systems. Each element of prison life—from numbing boredom to hard labor, from meager pleasure in popular ... More

Keywords: American prisons, Texas prisons, California prisons, prison life, inmates, penal system, New Deal America

Bibliographic Information

Print publication date: 2012 Print ISBN-13: 9780814709405
Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016 DOI:10.18574/nyu/9780814709405.001.0001


Affiliations are at time of print publication.

Ethan Blue, author