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No More Prisons: Urban Life, Home-Schooling, Hip-Hop Leadership, the Cool Rich Kids Movement, a Hitchhiker's Guide to Community Organzing, and Why Philanthropy is the Greatest Art Form of the 21st Century!
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No More Prisons: Urban Life, Home-Schooling, Hip-Hop Leadership, the Cool Rich Kids Movement, a Hitchhiker's Guide to Community Organzing, and Why Philanthropy is the Greatest Art Form of the 21st Century!

3.75  ·  Rating details ·  638 ratings  ·  48 reviews
No More Prisons On Urban Life, Homeschooling, Hip-hop Leadership, The Cool Rich Kids Movement, Community Organizing and Why Philanthropy is the Greatest Artform of the 21st Century. William Upski Wimsatt In this follow-up to the underground best-seller "Bomb the Suburbs, William Upski Wimsatt "The Hitch-hiker's Guide expands its focus out of culture and into politics. Hybr ...more
Paperback, 160 pages
Published February 12th 2001 by Soft Skull Press (first published September 15th 1999)
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Start your review of No More Prisons: Urban Life, Home-Schooling, Hip-Hop Leadership, the Cool Rich Kids Movement, a Hitchhiker's Guide to Community Organzing, and Why Philanthropy is the Greatest Art Form of the 21st Century!
May 30, 2008 rated it liked it
Recommended to Wealhtheow by: Julian
This book is better as a reminder than as a wake-up call. Wimsatt didn't write a coherent, cohesive argument so much as an anecdotally charged, energetic ramble. That critique mentioned, Wimsatt is clearly a righteous person who implements the most useful forms of self-help and groundswell/grassroots activism and community involvement.

Not even half of Americans have ever been punched in the face, apparently. Craziness!
Jan 04, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Upski Upski Upski - yes, he does it well in this book. NMP is a real, honest attempt at identifying the schisms in this current societal vision that he's been seeing all along. The prison industrial complex in our government budget and in our minds and in our education systems are all called out and overhauled in this DIY manual to multi-dimensional liberation. I admire the lucidity, responsibility, and progression of Wimsatt's own thoughts in a constructive manner [from his first book to this o ...more
May 21, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
A great political book filled with ideas and perspectives that are rarely given voice. Though it lacked the pure driven energy and idealism of his previous book (which was written when he was considerably younger), it was balanced by being more... well, balanced, with the wisdom and perspective of being a bit older.
Jul 06, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Amazing. Could not put it down. I read it while walking down the sidewalk. I am going to order more copies to give to my friends, because the author does such noble things with his money. I feel inspired, and I feel like even though I'm done reading it, it is an excellent reference for radical, progressive resources that interest me.
Nov 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
This is one of those books that if I had read it in high school it would have blown my mind. It's idealistic to the extreme, a bit naive in places, but full of good ideas and passion. I particularly loved the section on homeschooling and self-education. There were a couple examples of really outstanding kids who had broken from the public school mold and pursued their passions beyond anyone's wildest expectations. I also liked the focus on black and lower income families in this section as I thi ...more
John Becker
Sep 03, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: terrence mccrary, aaron tacker-weiss
upski used to write in chicago, where he grew up. now he's an organizer, activist and writer. best part about this book is the 'rules for graf writing.' no more prisons is even better; it's where he really breaks it down. this is a good place to start though.
Aug 26, 2007 rated it it was ok
Shelves: not-impressed
not at all what the title suggests. disappointing
Stephen Conti
Jan 31, 2008 rated it it was ok

Consumerism and privatization VS the educated grafitti kid
Chris Frederick
Sep 23, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: re-reading
Read it.
I can't do this book justice, but I won't let that stop me from sharing my thoughts. There's a lot of them.

Billy Wimsatt: Who is this guy?
He's a visionary who thinks big. He's a non-profit entrepreneur. He's a people person unafraid to talk to any stranger. He's a believer in leadership by young people.

He's also on Facebook and Youtube.
Which is weird, because he published No More Prisons in 1999, in his twenties. Now he's 36.

My copy of No More Prisons is heavily annotated and underline
Samuel L
Jul 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I remember reading this book as a teenager and feeling inspired---like I could make a difference! I am curious to read it again now to see how I have changed and whether it gives me the same feeling...
Apr 02, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very motivating.
Dave Cazeau
May 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Better than the other work I have read...
Dec 30, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Insightful, honest and made for the masses. I wish everyone would read this book! The world would be a very different place if we all did
Jan 08, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
outdated in some ways but painfully relevant in others
May 13, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Incredible fresh read that was life changing for me - it made me start listening to hip-hop, with all what came from that.
Erhardt Graeff
Jul 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This is such an inspiring and reflective follow-up to Wimsatt's first book, Bomb the Suburbs. The casual tone of the writing makes it a fluid and fast read, but also one that literally speaks to the reader, challenging them to be part of a solution to the ills of society. The author is trying to practice what he preaches and everything about the book is designed to do that. He is forthcoming about why is writing the book and how his thinking has changed since the previous one. You are meant to t ...more
Jan 09, 2008 rated it really liked it
Recommended to Melanie by: M. Carroll
Shelves: college, nonfic
See "self-education movement."

"I had big plans and the things I needed most there were no classes for. Hello? There are no...friendship classes. No classes on how to navigate a bureaucracy, build an organization, raise money, create a database, buy a house, love a child, spot a scam, talk someone out of suicide, or figure out what was important to me. Not knowing how to do these things is what mess people up in life, not whether they know Algebra or can analyze literature.

"What if they way some
Feb 02, 2008 rated it really liked it
i wouldn't rate this the same way as bomb the suburbs. this book has a few more concrete concepts in it that still stand to this day. some basic truisms (to me) about the problems with rising spending on prisons and the corresponding drop in funding for higher education; problems with privatizing prisons; the distinction between punishment and corrections; why graffiti isn't a bad idea, etc.

it's probably a bit rudimentary and polemic at this point, i.e. i don't think it would have the depth i'd
Jun 15, 2012 rated it liked it
Somewhat about prisons as concrete walls and buildings being part of the prison industrial complex, somewhat about the idea of prison and freedom in a larger societal sense. he talks about rich kids and philanthrophy for a large portion. the author brags but he tries to check himself and speak from his individual experience. nice to read someone who checks back, and reflects on what he used to think, what he learned from his "bomb the suburbs" era, and how he is refining his goals. this book cou ...more
Jan 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
this book is ok, but most definitely not about prisons. it's more an account of the author's experiences self-publishing his first book (bomb the suburbs) and being an activist.

i feel i should add to my earlier comments. the book, though still not about prisons, is pretty good, just skip the cool rich kids section. and i haven't gotten to it yet, but i'm guessing the philanthropy section will be another skipper. all the talk about how to make the best of your rich kid money is pretty annoying. b
Ceema Samimi
Sep 25, 2010 rated it did not like it
I have been dying to read this book for years after it was highly recommended by a friend. Maybe my expectations were too high but it is definitely not anything like I thought it would be. I couldn't take an more of the author's self-righteous rambling so I finally gave up. I think if I had read it in junior high I would have loved it, but now I just find it elementary and trite. I think for someone who is just getting into ideas of radicalism and comes from a place of privilege, this may be mor ...more
Jun 24, 2010 rated it liked it
i initially read this when i was 19 & it really inspired and amazed me. i picked it up again and i was kinda turned off by it. it's got some good ideas, but the author writes way too much about himself--sometimes it's engaging, sometimes it's merely self-serving. i'd recommend this book for teens and wealthy-yet-radical people. other people might get something from it too, but i think teens and w-y-r people would benefit the most. ...more
Aug 13, 2008 rated it liked it
Read this on a road trip to California with a brother and sister. Contains some cool ideas, but had a tough time competing with the majesty of Yosemite (where we dived in a mountain meltwater swimming hole) or the desolate Death Valley (where we camped under the stars). No More Prisons did jive well with the soundtrack for that trip, Bitter Tears and Rattle & Hum. ...more
Danni Green
Jun 17, 2015 rated it really liked it
This was a library impulse-grab. I liked it a lot! I would have liked to see the author examine his own privilege more. I appreciated the ways in which he uses his privilege to lift up the voices of marginalized members of his community/ies It is interesting to see how the seeds being planted in the late '90s have grown into the activist culture today.
charlotte Phillips
loaned to me by James, this book is by an Oberlin drop-out. It’s an amazing book about concious citizenship among the younger generations, and how we can and should work to help each other out. An amazing book that challenges traditional views of youth activism and education.
Feb 14, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gen-nonfiction
"it isn't about justice or peace or freedom or equality. it's about our very survival. the challenge before us as a human race in ensuring our own continuation is the most difficult challenge that has ever faced anyone in the history of life on earth."
May 23, 2008 rated it really liked it
just watched "bowling for columbine" and couldn't help but think of the first few chapters of this book... while i don't agree with many of the stands upski takes in this book, you can't help but admire his courage and ability to challenge our society's culture of fear....
Mar 07, 2012 rated it really liked it
Another important idea book for me circa the college years. Not as grand for me as _Bomb the Suburbs_, but still had some great ideas for me to steal. Such as making a "to read" list of every book that gets recommended to you more than three times. Very cool, very inspiring.
Feb 27, 2007 rated it really liked it
So far, I'm really liking this book!
Apr 19, 2007 rated it it was amazing
About more than just physical incarceration-- W.U.W. addresses the mental prisons created by society (culture of fear) and ways that individuals can keep their their freedom.
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William Wimsatt, also known as Billy or Upski, is a social entrepreneur, author, political activist, and former graffiti artist. Wimsatt is founder of the League of Young Voters, co-founder of Generational Alliance and the author or editor of six books.

Wimsatt was born in Chicago, attended the University of Chicago Laboratory Schools, received his High School diploma from Whitney M. Young Magnet H

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