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Juvenile In Justice

4.17  ·  Rating Details ·  171 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Winner of the 2012 Best News and Documentary Photography Award from the American Society of Magazine Editors for a selection published in Harper’s Magazine, the photographs in Juvenile in Justice open our eyes to the world of the incarceration of American youth. The nearly 150 images in this book were made over 5 years of visiting more than 1,000 youth confined in more tha ...more
Flexbound, 192 pages
Published August 31st 2012 by Richard Ross
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Books for Incarcerated Youth
10th out of 93 books — 31 voters
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Community Reviews

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Naomi Bates
Jan 17, 2014 Naomi Bates rated it really liked it
And excellent pictorial view of juvenile detention centers and those incarcerated there. This will be a controversial book, no doubt. I'm going to be a fence sitter on my views, because the topic of this book is based on politics. I will say there were some stories of kids who didn't belong there at all and those that did. As with all inmates, most of the narratives didn't show any responsibility, but these narratives are unique in that the reader MUST put into perspective human development and ...more
Mar 25, 2015 Peggy rated it really liked it
I wanted this book because of the photography, but I ended up more interested in the text. Juvenile correction statistics are shocking and individuals' stories even more so. As a society we should be paying more attention, not to mention improving our system. I thought in a few instances the author used statistics inappropriately (compared apples and oranges) to sensationalize. I'm not sure if this was deliberate or out of ignorance, but either way it didn't seem necessary to me; the reality was ...more
Powerful. Only takes an hour to read, but if you're looking for a new career path, this may decide it for you. I may not know how to keep kids out if these institutions, but I've got a better idea than the federal government on how to keep them from returning. Any thinking person does. So why do we allow this to continue? We have to change the prison economy if we want to change the prison system.

"Research shows that youth confined for longer periods of correctional confinement are no less like
Jenni Frencham
Wow. This book is amazing. Ross spent years visiting various juvenile detention facilities throughout the United States, and his photographs and snippets of interviews with inmates are interspersed with statistics regarding incarceration of juveniles. It's sad. Once kids are in the system, they're pretty much stuck there. There's very little rehabilitation. According to this book, people as young as 11 have been sentenced to life without parole - 11!

To all my Bloomington peeps: this book is now
Jul 08, 2016 Joe rated it really liked it
Powerful pictures with some pretty brutal statistics.
May 11, 2014 Jodie rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Julie - Book Hooked Blog
This book was an impulse read. I saw a review for it posted on Sarah Reads Too Much and thought it sounded like an interesting book. Luckily, I was able to pick up a copy at the local library to check out myself.

It's a collection of photographs illustrating what it means to be incarcerated in a juvenile facility. No faces are shown, but he photos picture the teens and, in some cases, children, who are locked up and are, supposedly, being rehabilitated, but who are frequently just beginning a lon
Kathleen Houlihan
Oct 30, 2012 Kathleen Houlihan rated it it was amazing
Juvenile In Justice is a book on a mission. Author and photographer Richard Ross seeks to open our eyes to the stories behind the walls of juvenile justice facilities throughout the U.S.

Each photograph of a child in a detention facility is accompanied by a paragraph about that child, often told from their own point of view. The photographs are from many different facilities, but these facilities are strikingly similar, as Ross points up in several multi-tile displays where the commonalities of
Mar 06, 2013 Amanda rated it it was amazing
Heartbreaking, illuminating and beyond important look at a slice of our society that seems entirely foreign to most, but ignored by many who are aware of it.
Deeply personal to me. An expanded look at what many families such as my own have had a small glimpse into, but could never fully understand. My older brother's adolescence mirrored so many of the accounts documented in this work. Behavior and mental problems that escalated as he got older eventually turning into stays at juvenile facilitie
Nov 01, 2013 Renata rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction
What a powerful, important book. Having read it, I'm very happy it won an Alex Award last year.

I enjoyed Ira Glass's forward but even more than that I enjoyed Bart Lubow's preface calling out Ira Glass's forward for focusing on violent teen offenders when so many teens in the American juvenile justice system are NOT there for violent crimes but rather for stupid bullshit. (OK that's not exactly what he said.)

Richard Ross's photographs of teens in juvenile detention centers and of the centers th
Emily Onufer
Oct 20, 2014 Emily Onufer rated it it was amazing
Juvenile in Justice is a collection of photographs accompanied by very short, first-person stories of life in a juvenile jail or correctional center. Richard Ross traveled around the country, visiting different juvenile centers across the United States. The pictures, which do not show any of the children’s faces, paint a haunting picture of the places they must reside in. Their short stories are extremely impactful, allowing the reader to step into their shoes for a brief moment in time.
Feb 12, 2014 Emily rated it really liked it
Shelves: politics, y-a, nonfiction
Another book from the 2013 Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers.

Incredible compilation of photos from inside juvenile prisons, combined with stark facts about juvenile detention and selections from the 1000+ interviews conducted by the author.

Must-read for anyone looking to get informed about e.g. efforts to build new juvenile detention centers. Warning: may turn you into a prison abolitionist. It's a book about cages for children, after all.
Susan Erhardt
Sep 24, 2015 Susan Erhardt rated it it was amazing
This floored me: " costs, on average, $88000 per year to incarcerate a single youth in a juvenile correctional facility. By comparison, a four-year public university costs less than $8000 a year."

That cost is a little out of date, but you could go to college full time and live on campus for four years for $88000! What a lot of money we waste housing kids in prison for minor infractions when we could be educating them instead.
Nov 05, 2014 Nabeela rated it it was amazing
Wow. This is an incredibly powerful photo project about youth incarceration in the United States. It explores the situations that cause these young people to make the decisions they do. It questions whether incarceration of children and teens is really the way to create a safer society. It shares the stories of some of the most vulnerable populations. Reading this book was both heartbreaking and necessary.
Andrea Scherer
BAM! This book is a punch in the face to anyone who has worked with teens and who cares about teens. Richard Ross does an amazing job of profiling tons of teenagers who are locked up in some sort of juvenile detention facility - he gets them to tell him their stories: why they're incarcerated, what their life was life before, what their life is like now, what they want. I agree with Ira Glass, in the foreword, when he says that the pictures are especially haunting because you can't see the teens ...more
I was not shocked by anything I saw or read here, really, but I was moved even still by the photos and the stories. Both are bleak, and that's the point. The statistics, statements, and photographic evidence are all pretty damning and really point to the counterproductive, classist, and racist nature of our juvenile justice system. The photos themselves are masterful in achieving emotional impact and artfully curated.

I just wish there was a way to both portray the lack of power these young peopl
Oct 31, 2014 Sarah rated it it was amazing
An amazing, informative, sad read. Humanizes prisoners and brings light onto the circumstances that led to their incarceration. Makes me feel like defending these teens from their own lives in so many ways.
There are more photographs than text in this book. The photographs are of Juvenile detention centers across the US as well as inmates with their faces blurred or physically covered/blocked by the subjects since all of them are minors. Each photograph has a caption. The caption of the kids explains in their own words why they are in the system.

There are also loads of Juvenile detention center facts like these two:

"Nearly 3 of every 4 youth confined in a residential facility for delinquency are n
This is an amazing resource. Really well done photographs, great layout, lots of statistics and data presented accessibly.

Also, really hard to read. You should pair it with No Choirboy for a period of reading really good and simultaneously awful information about juvenile justice.

They only thing they could have added would have been a glossary like this one:
Mar 23, 2013 Abby rated it it was amazing
This is a very powerful collection of images. It is disturbing on both sides - the crimes these kids have committed and also the way they are treated in many cases. There was only one institution mentioned in the book that seemed to have the right idea by encouraging manners, kindness, and a general sense of respect. It is clear that we need to look at these institutions. The images were beautiful and very effective in their message. A fascinating look at a group of people who rarely get attenti ...more
Nov 15, 2014 Cheryl rated it really liked it
Shelves: usa, lawyering
Depressing and thought-provoking.
Jun 21, 2013 Stephanie rated it it was amazing
This book offers a haunting look at the juvenile justice system and its many shortcomings. The author makes readily apparent the need for therapeutic care, not only corrective measures, as the vast majority of juvenile offenders have been victims of severe abuse, neglect, drug addiction, and mental illness. The stark images and layout add to the power of the author's purpose.
May 03, 2013 Charles rated it really liked it
The images in this book stay with you. The descriptions of prison life for teens and children in their own worlds, the disturbing statistics, the comments of corrections officers and administrators, all emphasize what the pictures of these anonymous children display: a system that is broken, despite people's best intentions.
Sep 22, 2012 Danielle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: nonfiction, 2012, awards
This book is amazing. I'm going to have to reread this.

The photos tell more of a story than the text. All ages and races and levels of confinement are represented here. You can tell that this is a labor of love.

Anyone who works with teens should pick this up.
Mar 09, 2013 Emmaj rated it liked it
Since this is self-published, I am not able to find it in either library system I belong to nor is either library system willing to buy it (I asked.
It looks great, but I'm not sure I'll ever know without buying it and I'm not sure I want to own it.
Mar 02, 2013 Hillary rated it it was amazing
This was a great insight into life in juvenile prisons in the U.S. I won't say it was easy to read (or see) by any means, but I think it was well worth my time to get an idea of what some of our nation's children are dealing with.
Lavabearian (Jessica)
Nov 29, 2012 Lavabearian (Jessica) rated it it was amazing
Shelves: quick-picks-2013
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
A very chilling look inside the American juvenile justice system. Also a very quick read, full of photos with brief blurbs about the subjects of the photos, identified by initials, age, and place of incarceration.
Mar 19, 2013 G. rated it it was amazing
Stunning and vital. Yes a picture is worth a thousand words here. I have been to several of these facilities and Mr. Ross captures their very essence. Unforgettable photo diary.
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