Posted on 10/07/2018 at 08:00 AM by Sadye Scott-Hainchek

Journalist Shane Bauer was imprisoned in Iran for over two years. So what did he do upon his release?

He went back to prison. Willingly, this time.

Bauer tells NPR’s Michel Martin that he’d expected to return to reporting on the Middle East — it was 2011, and the Arab Spring movement was in full force. 

Instead, his attention was drawn to California, where a reported 30,000 people were on hunger strike to protest the use of long-term solitary confinement in prison.

Bauer grew curious about the nation’s use of solitary confinement, so he began researching it.

Sometimes he found the information he wanted; other times, he had to fight for access to it.

So he came up with an alternative way to get the answers he wanted: take a job as a guard at a prison operated by a for-profit company.

His experience first became an article, then a book titled American Prison: A Reporter's Undercover Journey into the Business of Punishment.

Listen to Bauer discuss his work on All Things Considered below, or head to NPR’s website to read a transcript.

Categories: Author Interview

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