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Prison Quotes

The power of punishment is to silence, not to confute.

Samuel Johnson
Total votes: 59

It is certain that the study of human psychology, if it were undertaken exclusively in prisons, would also lead to misrepresentation and absurd generalizations.

Jacques Yves Cousteau
Total votes: 28

I have been studying how I may compare This prison where I live unto the world; And, for because the world is populous, And here is not a creature but myself, I cannot do it. Yet I'll hammer it out.

William Shakespeare
Total votes: 57

The number of laws is constantly growing in all countries and, owing to this, what is called crime is very often not a crime at all, for it contains no element of violence or harm.

P. D. Ouspensky
Total votes: 35

I know not whether laws be right, or whether laws be wrong; All that we know who lie in gaol is that the wall is strong; And that each day is like a year, a year whose days are long.

Oscar Wilde
Total votes: 60

If you want total security, go to prison. There you’re fed, clothed, given medical care and so on. The only thing lacking…is freedom.

Dwight David Eisenhower
Total votes: 45

It is true you cannot eat freedom and you cannot power machinery with democracy. But then neither can political prisoners turn on the light in the cells of a dictatorship.

Corazon Aquino
Total votes: 66

If we were brought to trial for the crimes we have committed against ourselves, few would escape the gallows.

Paul Eldridge
Total votes: 59

One man meets an infamous punishment for that crime which confers a diadem upon another.

Juvenal (Decimus Junius Juvenal)
Total votes: 74

When I was in prison, I was wrapped up in all those deep books. That Tolstoy crap - people shouldn't read that stuff.

Mike Tyson
Total votes: 77

I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.

Martin Luther King, Jr.
Total votes: 31

The solution to our drug problem is not in incarceration.
 

Barry McCaffrey
Total votes: 65

Prison continues, on those who are entrusted to it, a work begun elsewhere, which the whole of society pursues on each individual through innumerable mechanisms of discipline.

Michel Foucault
Total votes: 36

Prison, dungeons, blessed places where evil is impossible because they are the crossroads of all the evil in the world. One cannot commit evil in hell.

Jean Genet
Total votes: 43

The penalty for laughing in a courtroom is six months in jail; if it were not for this penalty, the jury would never hear the evidence.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 40

We have initiated programs for re-entry offenders, since some 500,000 to 600,000 offenders will come out of prison each year for the next three or four years. We want to have positive alternatives when they come back to the community.

Janet Reno
Total votes: 46

Three hundred years ago a prisoner condemned to the Tower of London carved on the wall of his cell this sentiment to keep up his spirits during his long imprisonment: “It is not adversity that kills, but the impatience with which we bear adversity.”

Father James Keller
Total votes: 43

Clemency alone makes us equal to the gods.

Claudian
Total votes: 73

Nor stony tower, nor walls of beaten brass, Nor airless dungeon, nor strong links of iron, Can be retentive to the strength of spirit; But life, being weary of these worldly bars, Never lacks power to dismiss itself.

William Shakespeare
Total votes: 57

If you strike at, imprison, or kill us, out of our prisons or graves we will still evoke a spirit that will thwart you, and perhaps, raise a force that will destroy you! We defy you! Do your worst!

James Connolly
Total votes: 33

Definition, rationality, and structure are ways of seeing, but they become prisons when they blank out other ways of seeing.

A. R. Ammons
Total votes: 36

When is conduct a crime, and when is a crime not a crime? When Somebody Up There -- a monarch, a dictator, a Pope, a legislator -- so decrees.

Jessica Mitford
Total votes: 41

Some laws of state aimed at curbing crime are even more criminal.

Friedrich Engels
Total votes: 43

Do not lay on the multitude the blame that is due to a few.

Ovid (Publius Ovidius Naso)
Total votes: 54

By noiselessly going to a prison a civil-resister ensures a calm atmosphere.

Gandhi
Total votes: 40