Karen Wald



The San Quentin Six Case: Perspective and Analysis

Wald exposes deteriorating prison conditions and describes prisoners’ resistance under monopoly capitalism. The article details the San Quentin Six case, which had its roots in the long history of prisoner resistance, the rise of the prison support movement, and the efforts of the state to smash and co-opt this struggle. The article summarizes the lessons to be drawn from the case, placing it in a much broader political and historical context. In the process, it charts the rise of the Prison Movement in the late 1960s, the convict code, and the eventual decline of the movement by the early 1970s, when it was at its most intense stage and had widespread support from liberal and left organizations. The essay explains why this case mobilized so much attention to the “racism and inherent injustice of the criminal justice system.”

prison movement, San Quentin Six case, Jonathan Jackson, Black Panther Party

Citation: Social Justice Vol. 40, Nos. 1-2 (2013): 231-251


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