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by Jens Soering

To a Correctional Facility in Virginia, he is known as "Prisoner 179212," but to a legion of journalists and legal reform activists he is Jens Soering, a German citizen who has endured for the past twenty-five years the harshest and most unforgiving punishment this country can offer―the American prison system. Told with dry humor and trenchant wit, One Day in the Life of 179212 provides an hour-by-hour survey of everyday life in a medium-security facility with all of its attendant hardships, contradictions, and even revelations.

Soering poignantly illustrates the importance of meditation and faith when confronted with extreme adversity, as well as the indisputable need for prison reform. Although this inspiring, eloquent memoir recounts just a day in the life of one man, it provides a powerful voice for the over two million men and women lost in the maze of America’s prison-industrial complex.

Download One Day in the Life of 179212 epub
ISBN: 159056345X
ISBN13: 978-1590563458
Category: Politics
Subcategory: Social Sciences
Author: Jens Soering
Language: English
Publisher: Lantern Books (April 1, 2012)
Pages: 176 pages
ePUB size: 1608 kb
FB2 size: 1581 kb
Rating: 4.4
Votes: 274
Other Formats: docx lrf mbr lit

Although it's only 176 pages (140 are the actual book), this book is filled with so many facts, statistics and personal accounts on Virginia's prison system, I came away from it feeling as though I'd read a tome. This is a real eye opener about the injustices and corruption of our American prison systems, namely Virginia's prisons. Told in the form of an entire day in the life of an inmate from a firsthand point of view, the contents of this book cannot be ignored. In essence, our prison systems our failing us in favor of more "cost effective" measures of "punishment". The end result is more repeat offenders (recidivism)versus rehabilitated inmates living productive and crime free lives outside of prison. Also, there's the "marketing" issue in prisons. Having big corporations come in and raise prices on everyday items such as shampoo and soap for inmates who generally have no money, other than the small wages they make doing their prison jobs, is outrageous and in itself a harsh form of cruelty and punishment. In other words, the prison system seems more intent on punishing offenders than it does rehabilitating. Therefore, offenders are often returned to prison shortly after their release, not rehabilitated or "institutionalized" as it's more often referred to.
Mr. Soering also gives us a look into the dark world of the prison sex/drug trade. It's astonishing to learn that so many inmates are living, untreated, with HIV/AIDS and/or Hepatitis C because the cost of their treatment would be too costly. And unlike some other online reviews of this book, I did not see the faintest hint of homophobia or racism in this book. Mr. Soering merely stated facts and statistics regarding prison homosexuals versus true homosexuals, various religious groups, and racial segregation as it relates to today's prison system. Meditating with a racially diverse group of inmates does not sound like racist behavior to me. Mr. Soering chooses not to sugarcoat this touchy subject and for that, I thank him. It sets this book apart from many others of it's kind. I admit, there were times when I flinched when reading certain chapters. Prison life is not a luxury vacation.
What also makes this book unique is that it is written by and told through the eyes of a prisoner who is currently serving two life sentences(for a wrongful conviction), yet he makes no attempt to plead his case. His focus is not on himself but on the injustices of all prisoners. It's obvious this was written with sincerity and the need to inform others of what goes on behind prison walls. I highly recommend this book to anyone who has ever had family/friends who have been imprisoned or has an interest in criminal justice. I promise this book will not disappoint.
Jens Soering is a master at interweaving the angst of incarceration with the issues that plague the American Prison Industrial Complex. I appreciated learning a little more about what led to his incarceration having read others of his publications. Patricia McGinty offers his story in the third person as an afterword. But this book is primarily important because, in it, Jens continues to open our eyes to injustices as well as the humanity of those incarcerated who try to navigate these injustices daily. An important read!
It is difficult to understand why prison wardens choose to punish rather than rehabilitate so that at least some of the inmates can be released and contribute to society. I believe this story is an excellent example of punishment rather than rehabilitation. I suspect finances enter into decisions made but to me, this is a sad commentary on our society.
Riveting diary with a real inside view of life on the "inside." Wow! Learned so much and it's written so well and in a fascinating and revealing way!
Jens, you have the Va. Department of Corrections Prison System down to a T! Only those who have worked there or have served time will understand. BTW, I worked there!
This book gives rare insight into what a day in a U.S. prison is like. A few surprises, especially regarding the food. Definitely worth reading.
Page turner though disconcerting, disquieting, and downright shocking. I would recommend that all of us not only read it but reflect on what it means for our society.
Love it I highly recommend this book to any & everyone!!! I've even Jens & Elizabeth!!! I give it a 4 star rating!!!