Lifers: Learn the Truth at the Expense of Our Sorrow

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9780671725488: Lifers: Learn the Truth at the Expense of Our Sorrow
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Describes the Juvenile Awareness Program run by convicts at the East Jersey State Prison, and shares the stories of individual inmates

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From Kirkus Reviews:

A hard-edged look at prison through the eyes of the Lifers' Group, men serving life sentences at the East Jersey State Prison who have dedicated themselves to reaching troubled teenagers. The lifers' brutally confrontational style is documented in a 1979 film, Scared Straight; this book is something of a follow- up, describing the prisoners' efforts to counsel and to keep in touch with young people they have met. Quoting and paraphrasing interviews with several prisoners and officials, Wormser goes on to show that lifers are not typical members of the prison population. Many take advantage of educational opportunities; they are articulate, self-motivated, and frank about their personal failings and the physical, sexual, and spiritual realities of prison life. They also find much to criticize in the American system of justice; Wormser backs up their indictment with telling barrages of statistics. The message here is not superficial: ``If you are not able to make the right choices,'' one lifer writes, ``society will make a choice for you.'' Less able readers may be unlikely to read this from cover to cover, but its many strong statements will leave even casual browsers thoughtful and better informed. The b&w photos are a bit fuzzy as reproduced, but well varied and quietly poignant-- especially the candid shots of the men with their visiting families. Bibliography; index. Nonfiction. 11-18) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.

From School Library Journal:

Grade 8-10-- A general overview of the current state of incarceration in America grows from the more precise description of the genesis, evolution, and present status of the Juvenile Awareness Program at East Jersey State Prison in Rahway, New Jersey. Wormser recounts how four men serving life terms received permission in 1975 to start the program "to help keep troubled teenagers out of jail." Straight facts on adult and adolescent prison statistics are provided in context as young adolescent offenders are exposed to the Lifers' dramatic presentation. This includes graphic language and a tough, no-nonsense treatment of the youths to demonstrate the realities and brutalities of life in a maximum security facility. Chapters feature one-on-one and group discussions/interviews. The men speak with authority and from a variety of criminal experiences. They are articulate spokesmen and the best representatives for their cause, personalizing and strengthening their message. Black-and-white photos scattered throughout are occasionally grainy and act principally to enhance and elucidate the text. An appended bibliography features related adult titles. Factual information is woven skillfully into this relevant package that should make a lasting impression on readers. Useful for both reports and as potential discussion material. --Celia A. Huffman, Cuyahoga County Public Library, Cleveland
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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Wormser, Richard
Published by Julian Messner (1991)
ISBN 10: 0671725483 ISBN 13: 9780671725488
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Murray Media
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Book Description Julian Messner, 1991. Library Binding. Condition: New. Never used!. Seller Inventory # P110671725483

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