Review "An important and timely book, Jailcare lays bare how we have neglected the social safety net and distorted the ways in which we care for our most vulnerable and marginalized citizens by enacting policies that devalue the lives of women and their children." ? Journal of Children and Poverty"Insightful and convincing." ? Journal of the Royal Anthropological Institute"A sobering critique of the new administration?s social, judicial, and economic policies and its potential effects on mass incarceration." ? Somatosphere"A welcome addition to a troublingly small body of scholarship on the subject." ? Medical Anthropology Quarterly Product Description Thousands of pregnant women pass through our nation?s jails every year. What happens to them as they carry their pregnancies in a space of punishment? In this time when the public safety net is frayed, incarceration has become a central and racialized strategy for managing the poor. Using her ethnographic fieldwork and clinical work as an ob-gyn in a women?s jail, Carolyn Sufrin explores how jail has, paradoxically, become a place where women can find care. Focusing on the experiences of incarcerated pregnant women as well as on the practices of the jail guards and health providers who care for them, Jailcare describes the contradictory ways that care and maternal identity emerge within a punitive space presumed to be devoid of care. Sufrin argues that jail is not simply a disciplinary institution that serves to punish. Rather, when understood in the context of the poverty, addiction, violence, and racial oppression that characterize these women?s lives and their reproduction, jail can become a safety net for women on the margins of society. From the Inside Flap ?There were pregnant women in every prison and jail I have been held in or have visited. Carolyn Sufrin holds the fates of these women and their children up to the light and reveals the complexity of motherhood and reproductive justice in the most difficult circumstances-behind bars. Jailcare is a moving and galvanizing story of pregnant women in jail and those responsible for their health. It is essential reading for anyone who cares about women, children, and justice.?-Piper Kerman, author of Orange Is the New Black: My Year in a Women's Prison ?Jailcare delves deep into the complex and tragic realities of mass incarceration in a large city jail for women. We follow the author, an anthropologist and jail physician, hard at work as a caring and critically reflexive ?double agent.? Sufrin?s clients are revolving-door jail inmates-women with multiple medical, social, psychological, and addiction problems-for whom a few nights or weeks in jail is about as stable a home place as it gets. Jails, like most other penal institutions, produce both violence and care. Sufrin?s captivating, beautifully told, but extremely disturbing stories of pregnant women and mothers in jail and the people charged with caring for them indict a cruel society that all but coerces women living on the extreme margins of urban life to commit a crime in exchange for transient but necessary medical and reproductive care. This stunning book is a must-read not only for professionals in the field, but for every citizen who does not understand the consequences of mass incarceration for women, their children, their caretakers, and the society that allows it. Sufrin makes clear that we cannot ignore our own complicity in the Kafkaesque system.?-Nancy Scheper-Hughes, author of Death without Weeping: The Violence of Everyday Life in Brazil ?Carolyn Sufrin?s unique positionality as a physician/anthropologist delivering healthcare to pregnant women in the San Francisco County Jail renders visible the coercive and bureaucratically litigious contortions of caregiving for ?unworthy? mothers. Her ethnography of the judgmentally triaged, hypermedicalized practices of a clinical oasis within the carceral services documents genuine expressions
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