Incarcerated women have historically been even more neglected than their male counterparts, denied not only health services such as those demanded above, but also things necessary to basic hygiene and reproductive health, such as showers and menstrual products. They have also historically been denied even the meager educational opportunities offered to incarcerated men, trained instead in vocational programs such as sewing and hairstyling.
Art and Picture Collection, The New York Public Library. “The Tombs Prison — midnight scene — the matron going the rounds.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1874. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47e1-2787-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99Capitalism as prison. Migratory laborers have been worked, historically and currently, in conditions as poor as have been seen since slavery was legal outside of prisons. Here, workers are physically prevented from leaving by a barbed wire fence.
Female slaves and a child picking cotton. Though the emancipation proclamation “freed” slaves, the realities of daily life did not change radically, as slavery gave way to sharecropping and Jim Crow. As soon as one form of oppression dies, another rises to take its place.Women in institutions have long been subjected to what is politely referred to as “experimentation”, universally exploitative and at worst downright torturous. Many women of color were institutionalized and subsequently subjected to sterilization, lobotomies, and worse, without their consent and sometimes without their knowledge. These abuses occurred in prisons and mental institutions, but also in hospitals.
Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, Jean Blackwell Hutson Research and Reference Division, The New York Public Library. “A type that is passing.” The New York Public Library Digital Collections. 1906. http://digitalcollections.nypl.org/items/510d47df-9e08-a3d9-e040-e00a18064a99
See above. 80 years later, life has not changed much for black women in the south. Industry still depends on their (underpaid) labor. In the present day, the location and nature of the labor has largely shifted from field work to work in the service and caretaking industries, and to prison labor.