Free Book Program
This is our current primary focus. Since 2006, we have gotten together every week to open prisoners’ letters, read their requests, and search through our library to find the books they want. We send a wide range of texts, ranging from dictionaries and GED study guides to Grisham novels, Greek philosophy to radical history. Check out this page, for more information about volunteering with us, and this page for more about what sorts of books we currently need.
In addition to books, we also make available dozens of “zines,” small booklets on contemporary political subjects like race, gender, direct action, anarchism, popular history, and anti-prison struggles. As we are able to provide multiple copies of these, prisoners are able to form study groups and themselves engage other prisoners in these topics. Study groups like these have popped up in a number of prisons throughout the South. Ideally, these groups can be a catalyst for prisoner organizing on the inside, as well as function as a form of dialogue between radicals on both sides of the prison walls. Latest Zine Catalog.
Words of Fire: Writing and Art by People in Prison
If you live nearby and would like to get involved, and help us publish our next issue, drop us an email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Starting in 2007 our collective has published prisoners’ art, writing, and poetry in our occasional publication Words of Fire. We printed our 6th edition in fall of 2010.
We published our 7th edition in spring 2013 (print-ready version of WOF 7, and WOF 7 Web Version).
We published our 8th edition in summer 2014 (WOF 8 Web Version and print-ready version of WOF 8).
We finally got our 9th edition published in spring 2017 (thanks to a group of students at UNC Chapel Hill!): WOF 9 Web Version and print-ready version of WOF 9.
We published our 10th edition in summer 2019: Words of Fire 10 Web Version.
Political Prisoner Posters
From February 2010 through about 2014, we hosted a monthly birthday card writing night to send words of solidarity and support to political prisoners celebrating a birthday that month. Through October 2017, a sister project distributed a monthly birthday poster to many groups around the country, who used it during their own card writing nights. The project is on hiatus (effective Oct. 2017). You can view past posters here. In addition, NYC ABC continues to maintain their calendar of political prisoner birthdays as well as a downloadable guide to political prisoners that includes brief bios.
Prison Abolitionist Reading Group
The reading group is currently on pause. If you’d like to help us re-start it, please drop us a line at email@example.com
In the Spring of 2009, collective members began meeting to plan out a regular prison abolitionist reading group for anyone who is working with our group, or is working with prisoners in some other fashion, or who has done time themselves. Prisoners we corresponded with also started getting involved, reading the same texts and sharing thoughts via the mail. This group met once a month, and covered topics such as mental health in prisons, histories of prison rebellions and organizing, social theory as related to the prison-industrial complex, the economic elements of the prison-industrial complex, and many others.