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Behind Bars: Writings From Inside

May 2007

We confess to smuggling out the arresting details, strong convictions, and guilty pleasures of these writings from prison. Fatos Lubonja recalls his chilling “Second Sentence.” Fadhil al-Azzawi negotiates prison politics in “Cell Block Five.” Khadija Marouazi’s phobic captive rats out his innocent cellmate in “Biography of Ash,” while Tirdad Zolghadr cuts a deal with his new “Friends.” Jorge Garcia and Fidel Martinez’s defiant women prisoners sing “The Ballad of Ventas Prison.” Leena Lander’s political activist in “The Order” writes her last letter to the foster father she served, then betrayed. Mario Benedetti reveals the captive unconscious in “He Dreamed That He Was in Prison.” And in escapes from other forms of confinement, Guillermo Saavedra’s “Runaway Country” captures a nation fleeing political and economic chaos, while Cuban exile and mental patient Guillermo Rosales “checks out” of his euphemistic “Boarding Home.” We trust you’ll be a captive audience.

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