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Prison Quotes

Intellectual despair results in neither weakness nor dreams, but in violence. It is only a matter of knowing how to give vent to one's rage; whether one only wants to wander like madmen around prisons, or whether one wants to overturn them.

Georges Bataille
Total votes: 16

I never saw a man who looked With such a wistful eye Upon that little tent of blue Which prisoners call the sky.

Oscar Wilde
Total votes: 17

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

Samuel Johnson
Total votes: 11

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

Gandhi
Total votes: 16

There are only two places in the world where time takes precedence over the job to be done. School and prison.

William Glasser
Total votes: 14

You stuff somebody into the American dream, and it becomes a prison.

Craig L. Thomas
Total votes: 13

In prisons, those things withheld from and denied to the prisoner become precisely what he wants most of all.

Eldridge Cleaver
Total votes: 13


Karl Menninger
Total votes: 12

Adversities such as being homeless and going to prison has made many people stronger.

Philip Emeagwali
Total votes: 14

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: 18

There is no peace because the making of peace is at least as costly as the making of war - at least as exigent, at least as disruptive, at least as liable to bring disgrace and prison and death in its wake.

Daniel Berrigan
Total votes: 9

The only effect of public punishment is to show the rabble how bravely it can be borne; and that every one who hath lost a toe-nail hath suffered worse.

Walter Savage Landor
Total votes: 14

A country is in a bad state, which is governed only by laws; because a thousand things occur for which laws cannot provide, and where authority ought to interpose.

Samuel Johnson
Total votes: 13

The idea that the sole aim of punishment is to prevent crime is obviously grounded upon the theory that crime can be prevented, which is almost as dubious as the notion that poverty can be prevented.

H. L. Mencken
Total votes: 16

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: 11

Steal goods and you’ll go to prison, steal lands and you are a king.

Japanese Proverb
Total votes: 16

The torment of human frustration, whatever its immediate cause, is the knowledge that the self is in prison, its vital force and 'mangled mind' leaking away in lonely, wasteful self-conflict.

Elizabeth Drew
Total votes: 20

Every instance of a man's suffering the penalty of the law is an instance of the failure of that penalty in effecting its purpose, which is to deter.

Archbishop Richard Whately
Total votes: 18

We are prisoners of ideas.

Ralph Waldo Emerson
Total votes: 18

I existed in a world that never is - the prison of the mind.

Gene Tierney
Total votes: 21

Any punishment that does not correct, that can merely rouse rebellion in whoever has to endure it, is a piece of gratuitous infamy which makes those who impose it more guilty in the eyes of humanity, good sense and reason, nay a hundred times more guilty than the victim on whom the punishment is inflicted.

Marquis de Sade
Total votes: 11

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: 22

Two men look out the same prison bars; one sees mud and the other stars.

Frederick Langbridge
Total votes: 22

Let us remember that justice must be observed even to the lowest.

Cicero (Marcus Tullius Cicero)
Total votes: 20

Crime succeeds by sudden despatch; honest counsels gain vigor by delay.

Tacitus (Caius Cornelius Tacitus)
Total votes: 13