For this week’s episode, we share a conversation between Melanie D. Newport and Anne Gray Fisher. They talk about the history of Cook County Jail- the largest facility in the country.
Melanie D. Newport is an Assistant Professor of US History at the University of Connecticut-Hartford. Her work explores the criminal justice system in the United States since the 1950s. Melanie is currently writing a history of Cook County Jail in Chicago called Community of the Condemned: Chicago and the Transformation of the American Jail. Community of the Condemned focuses on how incarcerated people and their allies resisted and fought the transformation of American jails in the postwar era. Melanie has taught at Garden State Youth Correctional Facility in New Jersey and she has trained with the Inside-Out Prison Education exchange. Anne Gray Fisher is the interviewer, and she teaches history at the University of Texas, Dallas.