Angela Davis, The Prison Industrial Complex

Ron Wynn

By Ron Wynn

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Since the late '60s, Dr. Angela Davis has been a passionate opponent of racism, hatred and many other social ills which she directly links to the capitalist system. This scathing spoken word release riffs on a familiar theme: that US prisons serve not as punishment centers for criminals but detainment facilities for selectively charged and unfairly sentenced segments of the population — mostly blacks and Latinos, but also women. On such tracks as "Young Black Men & Prison," and "Race, Class and Incarceration," Dr. Davis charges that inferior legal representation, class bias in courts, bigoted attitudes among jurors and hard-hearted judges all conspire to send black youth and poor people to prison for crimes while the rich cut deals and avoid imprisonment. Though she can sometimes become a bit pedantic, Dr. Davis is also savvy about boosting the force and vigor in her tone, driving home her message that the American judicial system has serious and fundamental flaws.