Interview with Amiri Baraka

And do you remember seeing that when you went into the prisons? Do you remember--I mean, how would you see that?


By the way they were organized. They had many different organizations. The inmates were organized into different organizations, like I said, they had the Nation of Islam, The Congress of African People, The Black Panther Party, they had them in the prisons. They had, you know, a prison Black Panthers, a prison Nation of Islam, a prison Congress of African People, you know the same things you saw on the outside. Now in the inside there's still, ah, Black consciousness movements but not nearly as many as there were. The nation is probably still there, not as much as it was, but you see more people now who you say it's the same as the outside, meaning the people is smoking as much dope, or shooting as much dope inside as they are outside. That's true. But you still have a core of people who develop their consciousness when they're in prison because, you know, they're in school. They see it as a school and not just a prison.