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Crime and Criminals : Address to the Prisoners in the Chicago Jail: Address to the Prisoners in the Chicago Jail

By Darrow, Clarence

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Book Id: WPLBN0100002659
Format Type: PDF (eBook)
File Size: 112.10 KB.
Reproduction Date: 01/01/1902

Title: Crime and Criminals : Address to the Prisoners in the Chicago Jail: Address to the Prisoners in the Chicago Jail  
Author: Darrow, Clarence
Language: English
Subject: Non Fiction, Law, Criminals.
Collections: Politics, Authors Community
Publication Date:
Publisher: Charles H. Kerr Publishing Company
Member Page: History Is A Weapon .org


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Darrow, C. (1902). Crime and Criminals : Address to the Prisoners in the Chicago Jail. Retrieved from

Darrow's Crime & Criminals, originally published by Charles H Kerr in 1902, is not only one of the greatest works by the greatest attorney in US history, it is also a little masterpiece in the literature of social criticism and the struggle for freedom. In a few pages radiant with the forceful eloquence and dry humor for which he was so justly renowned, Darrow offers the man in the street - or more precisely in this case, in jail - a crash course in the theory and practice of law and criminology. He discusses what crime is, what causes it, why more people go to jail in winter than in summer, why the real criminals almost never go to prison, why punishment doesn't work, and - in the end - why the US criminal justice system is in fact a system of injustice, a colossal and barbaric failure. This new edition includes a remarkable essay 'Darrow's Crime And Criminals A Century Later' by Leon M Despres. Opening with valuable biographical and historical background regarding Darrow's views on crime and criminals, Despres also discusses the results of a survey made in 1996, in which a number of prisoners at Cook County Jail were invited to comment on Darrows 1902 talk. This edition also features excerpts from several other writings by Darrow on law, crime and punishment. An important Afterword by Carol Heises, an attorney and activist involved with prisoners on Cook County Jail's Death Row focuses on Darrow's views on capital punishment. Plus, a Foreword from Penelope Rosemont.

This address is a stenographic report of a talk made to the prisoners in the Chicago jail. Some of my good friends have insisted that while my theories are true, I should not have given them to the inmates of a jail. Realizing the force of the suggestion that the truth should not be spoken to all people, I have caused these remarks to be printed on rather good paper and in a somewhat expensive form. In this way the truth does not become cheap and vulgar, and is only placed before those whose intelligence and affluence will prevent their being influenced by it. —Clarence Darrow


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