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The issue of books behind bars

The issue of books behind bars

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In America the issue of censorship has, for the most part, been settled. In ‘normal’ society, the rule is that there are no rules. Americans are constitutionally guaranteed a right to free speech, and jurists over the decades have been loath to impinge on that right.

But it’s a different story behind bars. The issue of censorship in prisons has been in the news recently, and we’ve been following it closely. What rights do inmates have to books? In Connecticut there was an outcry because prisoners had access to violent books. In South Carolina, a sheriff only allows inmates to read the bible, and the ACLU has filed suit. We've compiled those stories here, along with columns from CorrectionsOne columnist Joe Bouchard, a prison librarian with deep insight into this important issue.


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•  To ban or not to ban
•  Prison libraries can be key to inmate reentry
•  ACLU sues US jail over Bible policy
•  Conn. prison inmates have choice of violent books