Whatever you think of de Sade, he was a complex figure and we should not look for easy answers with him. He was, strangely perhaps, against the death penalty, and he was never put in prison for murders or anything like that.
I wrote a million words in the first year, and I could never have done that outside of prison.
Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.
Wicked deeds are generally done, even with impunity, for the mere desire of occupation.
It isn't true that convicts live like animals: animals have more room to move around.
Taught from infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison.
I am certain that nothing has done so much to destroy the juridical safeguards of individual freedom as the striving after this mirage of social justice.
In a civilized society, all crimes are likely to be sins, but most sins are not and ought not to be treated as crimes.
It is certain that the study of human psychology, if it were undertaken exclusively in prisons, would also lead to misrepresentation and absurd generalizations.
Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circles of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.
When the Nazis came for the communists, I remained silent; I was not a communist. When they locked up the social democrats, I remained silent; I was not a social democrat. When they came for the trade unionists, I did not speak out; I was not a trade unionist. When they came for me, there was no one left to speak out.
The reformative effect of punishment is a belief that dies hard, chiefly I think, because it is so satisfying to our sadistic impulses.
It is impossible to go through life without trust: That is to be imprisoned in the worst cell of all, oneself.
If we look at Houston, which is a very environmentally toxic place, we find that it has one of the highest levels of young men going to prison and also among the highest levels of illiteracy in the country.
Crime is a logical extension of the sort of behavior that often [is] considered perfectly respectable in legitimate business.
The common argument that crime is caused by poverty is a kind of slander on the poor.
The refined punishments of the spiritual mode are usually much more indecent and dangerous than a good smack.
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.
On average, drug prisoners spend more time in federal prison than rapists, who often get out on early release because of the overcrowding in prison caused by the Drug War.