Emily L Thuma, All Our Trials: Prisons, Policing, and the Feminist Fight to End Violence

AuthorMiriam Shovel
Published date01 July 2020
Date01 July 2020
Subject MatterBook reviews
untitled Punishment & Society
Book review
2020, Vol. 22(3) 376–379
! The Author(s) 2019
Article reuse guidelines:
DOI: 10.1177/1462474519868228
Emily L Thuma, All Our Trials: Prisons, Policing, and the Feminist Fight to End
Violence, University of Illinois Press: Champaign, IL, 2019; 246 pp.
(including index). ISBN: 978-0252084126, $19 (pbk), $82 (cloth)
More than a decade before Kimberle´ Crenshaw coined the term ‘intersectionality’
(Crenshaw, 1989: 140), disparate networks of women whose identities and experi-
ences placed them at odds with cultural norms of femininity were cultivating a
distinct critique of the state centered on the racialized and gendered nature of
violence and punishment in the USA. All Our Trials tells the stories of the heroines
of this movement, many of whom have been overlooked or forgotten by other
feminist histories, documenting the development of anticarceral feminist thought
and practice. As well as chronicling individual women’s struggles for justice, Emily
L. Thuma explores how activist networks led by, and in association with, margin-
alized women gave voice to those on the receiving end of institutional and inter-
personal violence. By exposing the struggles of the silent multitudes who had been
rendered invisible by the coercive practices of the carceral state, these networks
problematized existing feminist and anticarceral ideologies. In the contemporary
context of social movements such as #BlackLivesMatter, which criticize the ever-
growing prison-industrial complex and draw attention to illegitimate violence per-
petrated by agents of the state, All Our Trials provides a genealogy of the ideas
behind alternatives to criminal justice; the roots of restorative and transformative
justice theories can be found in the struggles of the 1970s and 1980s.
The book is divided into four main chapters. The first, entitled “Lessons in Self-
Defense,” examines four cases of women (Joan Little, Inez Garcia, Dessie...

To continue reading

Request your trial

VLEX uses login cookies to provide you with a better browsing experience. If you click on 'Accept' or continue browsing this site we consider that you accept our cookie policy. ACCEPT