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One Read Program: Home

The Book

The New Jim Crow: Mass Incarceration in the Age of Colorblindness
Michelle Alexander
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As the United States celebrates the nation's "triumph over race" with the election of Barack Obama, the majority of young black men in major American cities are locked behind bars or have been labeled felons for life. Although Jim Crow laws have been wiped off the books, an astounding percentage of the African American community remains trapped in a subordinate status--much like their grandparents before them.

In this incisive critique, former litigator-turned-legal-scholar Michelle Alexander provocatively argues that we have not ended racial caste in America: we have simply redesigned it. Alexander shows that, by targeting black men and decimating communities of color, the U.S. criminal justice system functions as a contemporary system of racial control, even as it formally adheres to the principle of color blindness. The New Jim Crow challenges the civil rights community--and all of us--to place mass incarceration at the forefront of a new movement for racial justice in America.

Why a One Read?

For students, faculty, and staff, it is important to be exposed to and aware of aspects of the world beyond their own daily experiences. To facilitate this understanding, and also to strengthen our campus community, Mizzou Law started a One Read program in 2015. MU Libraries joined the program in 2017, and invites all students, staff, and faculty to read a particular book relating to diversity, inclusion, and current issues of social justice.

We believe that a One Read program will strengthen our Mizzou community by providing a focus for yearlong conversations and events across campus. Over the past several years, our attention has been drawn by events around the U.S. to issues of race and the experience of “otherness.” These issues reflect the challenges of seeing the world from another’s perspective – an imperative skill at any University, and as a member of society.

Access to the Book

There are several ways you can access the book:

  • Borrow it from your MU Libraries: The Libraries have acquired multiple copies of Infamy. Copies can be checked out from the Reserves Desk in Ellis Library, the Journalism Library, and the Law Library.
  • Purchase the book: The Mizzou StoreAmazonBarnes and Noble or the retailer of your choice.
  • Find it at a library near you: You can find local public and academic libraries that have the title. In Columbia, the Law Library, the public library (DBRL), and Columbia College all have copies as well.