by Ava DuVernay

13th is a 2016 American documentary by director Ava DuVernay. The film explores the “intersection of race, justice, and mass incarceration in the United States;” it is titled after the Thirteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution, adopted in 1865, which abolished slavery throughout the United States and ended involuntary servitude except as a punishment for conviction of a crime.

DuVernay contends that slavery has been perpetuated since the end of the American Civil War through criminalizing behavior and enabling police to arrest poor freedmen and force them to work for the state under convict leasing; suppression of African Americans by disenfranchisement, lynchings and Jim Crow; politicians declaring a war on drugs that weigh more heavily on minority communities and, by the late 20th century, mass incarceration of people of color in the United States. She examines the prison-industrial complex and the emerging detention-industrial complex, discussing how much money is being made by corporations from such incarcerations



when we think about slavery.. it was an econ system.. 4 million people formerly property.. integral part of econ production system of south.. and now those people are free..  so how do you rebuild your econ.. 13th amendment loophole was immediately exploded.. (arrested for anything.. so they could be slaves)

then came a myth of black criminality

24 min – nixon/reagan takes the problem of econ ineq, hyper segregation and drug abuse and criminalizes all of that in the form of the war on drugs.. exploded into mass incarceration

27 min – prison pop – 1980 – 513 900

28 min – when you make people afraid.. you can always justify putting people in a garbage can – cory greene..t

29 min – central park

when they see us

30 min – we make them their crime – that’s how we intro them.. that’s a rapist/murderer/robber/sex-offender/burglar/gang-leader..  and thru that lens it becomes easier to accept that they’re guilty and should go to prison – bryan stevenson

bryan stevenson

black and white people both.. believing black people are criminals and are scared

32 min – bush won election by framing black man as criminal

35 min – prison population over doubles 80-90 – 1 179 200

bush/clinton on death penalty

38 min – 95% of elected prosecutors throughout the us are white – ken thompson

40 min – clinton 1994 – 30 bn to prisons/police

2000 – 4x prison pop as 70

45 min – i think people haven’t thought about what it means to lose a fred hampton.. who somehow was able to pull together black and whites.. and puerto ricans and native americans.. to fight for justice.. at 21 .. (‘you can jail revolutionaries but you can’t jail a revolution) .. he had to go.. they literally went and shot his whole house up .. w his pregnant wife next to him in bed.. so afraid of a leader that could unite people- van jones..t


50 min – when people ask about violence.. they don’t have any idea what went on .. since the first black people were kidnapped from the shores of africa – angela davis

2014 – prison pop – over 4x –  2 306 200

53 min – trayvon and stand your ground and alec (corporations influence/propose laws – bills benefit corps) ie: walmart benefitted form stand your ground in selling guns.. after.. walmart steps out of alec.. but founders still part of alec (other corps shown.. comcast, fedex, direct tv, state farm, dupont.. )

58 min – thru alec/cca.. became huge industry.. had to keep prisons full even if not enough criminals

1:00 – bills/laws – 3 strikes; raid anyone; .. et al

we call them immigration facilities.. but they’re really prisons for immigrants

1:03 – we’re always going to see new permutations of a cancer – gina clayton..t

1:05 – on alec (probation and parole as business) incarcerating people not in prisons but right in their communities/homes – ankle bracelet et al – leader guy saying.. ‘take people out of prisons and put back in communities -crime reform’

how much progress is it really if people of color are still under perpetual surveillance and control.. but now there’s a private co making money off the gps monitor, rather than the person being locked in a literal cage – michelle alexander (she’s said so many sharp things through out)

if you’re in the prison business you don’t want reform.. you may say you do .. but you don’t

there’s a bunch of people out there.. desperately trying to make sure that prison population does not drop.. 1 person .. because their econ model needs that – bryan stevenson

1:06 – prison industrial complex: system of mass incarceration and co’s that profit from mass incarceration – daniel wagner

ie: inflated phone call cost in prison; inflated food/health cost in prison

one reason it’s so difficult to talk about mass incarceration in this country and to question it is because it has become so heavily monetized – daniel wagner

1:07 – we talk about sweat shops.. we beat our fists at people overseas for exploiting poor/free labor but we don’t look that it’s happening at home right here.. everyday – shaka senghor (on prison labor)


1:08 – corps profiting from punishment

1:09 – kalief browder

kalief browder story

1:10 – 1000s of people sitting in jail right now for no other reason than that they are too poor to get out – michelle alexander..t

we have a criminal justice system that treats you better if you’re rich and guilty than if you’re poor and innocent – bryan stevenson..t

if everyone insisted on a trial.. the whole system would shut down – bryan

97% of people locked up have plea bargained – one of the worst violations of human rights you can imagine in the us – rangel..t

1972 – prison pop 300 000 today.. 2.3 million –

1:17 – it seems in america we haven’t so much ended racial caste.. but redesigned it – michelle alexander

13th amendment – once convicted.. become slave of state

1:27 – areas where black people live – really occupied territories

1:31 – what’s new (not the protests et al) is that we can now force a convo about it – van jones

1:34 – the opposite of criminalization is humanization.. that’s the one thing i hope people will understand – van jones..t


when they see us

kalief browder story



prison ed

bryan stevenson

cure violence

cevin soling

peter m – (cure)(city)


matt taibbi