Fitting Sentences
by Jason Haslam (9780802038333)

Fitting Sentences
Jason Haslam
Release Date: 31 December 2005
Format: Hardback
Pages: 270
Category: Books & Reading
ISBN: 9780802038333
ISBN-10: 0802038336

Fitting Sentences is an analysis of writings by prisoners from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries in North America, South Africa, and Europe. Jason Haslam examines the ways in which these writers reconfigure subjectivity and its relationship with social power structures, especially the prison itself, while also detailing the relationship between prison and slave narratives. Specifically, Haslam reads texts by Henry David Thoreau, Harriet Jacobs, Oscar Wilde, Martin Luther King, Jr., Constance Lytton, and Breyten Breytenbach to find the commonalities and divergences in their stories. While the relationship between prison and subjectivity has been mapped by Michel Foucault and defined as 'a strategic distribution of elements' that act 'to exercise a power of normalization, ' Haslam demonstrates some of the complex connections and dissonances between these elements and the resistances to them. Each work was written either while its author was imprisoned (or enslaved) or shortly after his or her release, and each shows how carceral practices can be used to attack a variety of identifications, be they sexual, racial, economic, or any of a variety of social categories. By analysing the works of specific prison writers but not being limited to a single locale or narrow time span, Fitting Sentences offers a significant historical and global overview of a unique genre in literature.

AUD $106.95

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