Links & Books


Women in Prison

Women Coping in Prison
Learn more about the University of Virginia's study of women's experiences while living in prison. The site features fact sheets, reports on individual studies and links to resources.

The Sentencing Project
Since 1986, The Sentencing Project has promoted reduced reliance on incarceration and increased use of more effective and humane alternatives to deal with crime. Click on their "women and the criminal justice system" link for publications dealing with women prisoner issues.

Women's Prison Association
The Women's Prison Association & Home, Inc. (WPA) is a nonprofit agency working to create opportunities for change in the lives of women prisoners, ex-prisoners, and their families. WPA provides programs through which women aquire life skills needed to end involvement in the criminal justice system and to make positive, healthy choices for themselves and their families.

Prison Education


Changing Minds: The Impact of College in a Maximum Security Prison
Changing Minds reports on the effects of a 1997 college program at Bedford Hills Correctional Facility on its students and the prison environment. The analysis focuses on the impact of college on women while inside prison; the effects of college on the prison environment; the effects of college on other inmates; the effects of a mother's college experience on her children and the long term effects of college on the economic, social and civic engagements of women once released from prison.

The Three State Recidivism Study
Conducted by The Correctional Education Association for the United States Department of Education. Study finds attending school behind bars reduces the likelihood of re-incarceration.


Federal Bureau of Prisons Inmate Programs and Services
Visit the Public Info section of the Federal Bureau of Prisons site and click on "Inmate Programs and Services" to find out more about education, vocational training, and job training programs, which feature literacy classes, English as a Second Language (ESL), parenting classes, recreation activities, wellness education and adult continuing education.

Center for the Study of Correctional Education
In 1991, California State University, San Bernardino, established the unique Center for the Study of Correctional Education. Center activities include teacher preparation, research, and support services for correctional educators. The website offers articles on the history of correctional education in America and the effects of educational programs on recidivism statistics.

Correctional Education Association (CEA)
The CEA, founded in 1946, is a non-profit, professional association serving educators and administrators who provide services to students in correctional settings. The CEA is the largest affiliate of the American Correctional Association.

Justice for All
Justice for All works as an advocate of positive change to the U.S. criminal justice system.

Prison Stories

360 Degrees
Read stories of inmates, correctional officers, lawyers, judges, parole officers, parents, victims, and others whose lives have been affected by the criminal justice system. Site also features a timeline of the history of the crimnal justice system, classroom resources, links to audio files, and recommended reading and viewing.

PEN American Center - Prison Writing Program
Convinced that writing is inherently rehabilitative, PEN's Prison Writing Program launched its first annual literary competition in 1973 for men and women in federal and state prisons and jails throughout the country, and it has continued without interruption ever since. The website offers audio recordings of prisoners reading prize-winning work.
Features links to short stories, poems, newsletters and journals produced by inmates.

Prison Activist Links: Arts and Writings by Prisoners
Features links to short stories, poems, newsletters and journals produced by inmates.

Writing from the Inside and Out
Features links to stories, poems, personal essays by prisoners.


Inmate College Programs Now Rare
Read a 2000 article from the Poughkeepsie Journal about educational program cutbacks in New York state prisons.

National Center for the Study of Adult Learning and Literacy
Access a number of articles about correctional education from the "Focus on Basics" monthly newsletter from this Harvard University Center.

Returning from Prison

U.S. Department of Justice: Reentry
Find out more about the National Institute of Corrections reentry programs.

Reentry National Media Outreach Campaign
This campaign is designed to support the work of community and faith-based organizations by offering media resources that will facilitate community discussion and decision making about solution-based reentry programs. "What I Want My Words To Do To You" is a featured film. Find out more about how the film can be used with discussion groups at their website.

Reentry and Reintegration - What Is Corrections' Role? (PDF)
Read an editorial by James A. Gondles, Jr., Executive Director of the American Correctional Association.

Restorative Justice
Find out more about the process of reintegration.

Citizens United for Rehabilitation of Errants (CURE)
CURE is a nationwide grass roots organization dedicated to reducing crime through reform of the criminal justice system.

Family and Corrections Network
This organization provides information, training and technical assistance on children of prisoners, parenting programs for prisoners, prison visiting, incarcerated fathers and mothers, hospitality programs, keeping in touch, returning to the community, the impact of the justice system on families, and prison marriage.

Open Society Institute: Criminal Justice Initiative
Provides links and resources to learn more about community re-entry after prison.

The Urban Institute: Prisoner Reentry
This site provides information about projects, research, and discussions on prisoner reentry into community life after being released from prison.

Also on PBS and NPR Websites

Online Newshour: Challenging Drama
Newshour reports on a preview by California's San Quentin prison inmates of a dramatic work in progress, "John Brown's Body," an epic poem about slavery, freedom and the Civil War. (August 29, 2002)

Online Newshour: Prison Ministry
A prison ministry program, run by former Nixon aide Charles Colson to reform Texas inmates, is leading some critics to question the legality of religion in state prisons and the exclusion of non-religious prisoners. (September 1, 2003)

NOW: Prisons in America
Prisons are big in the United States. There are more people behind bars literally, and proportionally, than any time in our history. We have a higher percentage of our population in prison than any other nation. And, we keep building more prisons... (June 20, 2003)

Frontline: Burden of Innocence
After being released from serving years in prison for crimes they didn't commit, these stories follow the citizens as they try and start their lives all over again, with little help from the state.

NPR Stories

Prison Diaries
NPR's popular "Radio Diaries" series takes a look at prison life. For six months, the diarists kept audio journals and recorded the sounds and scenes of everyday life behind bars: shakedowns, new inmate arrivals, roll call, monthly family visits, meals at the chow hall, and quiet moments late at night inside a cell. Launched in conjunction with Prison Diaries is Picture Projects' Web site:

Morning Edition: Giving Convicts a Second Chance
NPR reports on efforts in Baltimore, Md., to find jobs for those who are determined to stay out of prison. (August 27, 1003)

All Things Considered: States Target Prison System to Cut Costs
NPR reports on how many states are considering early release and new sentencing laws as a way to reduce prison populations. (July 26, 2003)

Tavis Smiley: Prison Literacy Program
Tavis Smiley talks with Darryl, an inmate at Monroe Correctional Complex, and Karen Proctor, vice president of Community Affairs and Government Relations with Scholastic about a new program called "Words Travel" that allows imprisoned parents an opportunity to develop relationships with their children through reading. (June 9, 2003)

All Things Considered: Prison Diaries
Prisoners use tape recorders to document the sounds and events of everyday life in prison.