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Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of…

Queer (In)Justice: The Criminalization of LGBT People in the United States…

by Joey Mogul, Joey Mogul, Andrea J. Ritchie

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from my review in Monthly Review:

In 1513, en route to Panama, Spanish conquistador Vasco Nunez de Balboa ordered forty Quaraca men to be ripped apart by his hunting dogs. Their offense? Being “dressed as women” and having sexual relations with each other. The homophobia and transphobia behind Balboa’s actions are far from arcane relics of the past, and violence against LGBTQ people continues to this day, both legally sanctioned and in the streets.

In 2008, Duanna Johnson, a black transgender woman, was arrested for a prostitution-related offense in Memphis. At the jail, she was brutally beaten by a police officer. Her beating was caught on videotape, leading to the firing of two officers. Johnson filed a civil suit against the police department but, less than six months later, was found shot in the head a few blocks from her house. This was the third killing of a black transgender woman in Memphis in 2008 alone, and her murder remains unsolved.

Queer (In)Justice examines the violence that LGBTQ people face regularly, from attacks on the street to institutionalized violence from police and prisons. The three authors are long-time advocates and attorneys who work directly with people impacted by incarceration. Joey L. Mogul, a partner at Chicago’s People’s Law Office and Director of the Civil Rights Clinic at DePaul University, has advocated for LGBTQ people ensnared in the criminal legal system. Andrea Ritchie is a police misconduct attorney, organizer, and coordinator of Streetwise and Safe, a New York City organization focused on gender, race, sexuality, and poverty-based policing and criminalization of LGBTQ youth of color. Kay Whitlock has worked for almost forty years to build bridges between LGBTQ struggles and movements fighting for racial, gender, economic, and environmental justice. Together, they center race, class, and gender/gender nonconformity in analyzing the myriad ways in which LGBTQ people have been policed, prosecuted, and punished from colonial times to the present day.

Rest of my review at: http://monthlyreview.org/2012/11/01/queer-liberation-means-prison-abolition ( )
  VikkiLaw | Apr 4, 2013 |
This book is an absolute must-read. It details this history of how the criminal system has preyed upon queer people throughout the centuries and how criminalization effects queer people more severely than other folks. This book covers in-depth the intersections of class, race, gender, and gender identity to present a chilling picture how police and society preys upon queer people; particularly poor, queer, people of color and offers them no recourse. The authors present on the ineffectiveness of domestic violence laws and hate crimes legislation.

I was challenged by this book to think in new ways about prisons and prison reform. I think this book should be required reading for all queer people and all people of faith who want to see justice for queer people. I cannot recommend this book highly enough. ( )
  shannonkearns | Aug 13, 2011 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Joey Mogulprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Mogul, Joeymain authorall editionsconfirmed
Ritchie, Andrea J.main authorall editionsconfirmed
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0807051160, Hardcover)

A groundbreaking work that turns a “queer eye” on the criminal legal system, and winner of the 2011 PASS (Prevention for a Safer Society) Award from the National Council on Crime and Delinquency
Drawing on years of research, activism, and legal advocacy, Queer (In)Justice is a searing examination of queer experiences--as "suspects," defendants, prisoners, and survivors of crime. The authors unpack queer criminal archetypes--like "gleeful gay killers," "lethal lesbians," "disease spreaders," and "deceptive gender benders"--to illustrate the punishment of queer expression, regardless of whether a crime was ever committed. Tracing stories from the streets to the bench to behind prison bars, the authors prove that the policing of sex and gender both bolsters and reinforces racial and gender inequalities. A groundbreaking work that turns a "queer eye" on the criminal legal system, Queer (In)Justice illuminates and challenges the many ways in which queer lives are criminalized, policed, and punished. 

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:20:38 -0400)

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Draws on years of research, activism, and legal advocacy to present an examination of the gay experience, illustrating the continuing punishment of gay expression in the United States and illuminating strategies for change.

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Beacon Press

An edition of this book was published by Beacon Press.

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