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Tossing Away the Keys


Tossing Away the Keys

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The Louisiana State Penitentiary, Angola, holds more than five-thousand prisoners, mostly African Americans. In the 1970s, the state's politicians changed the definition of a life sentence. A life sentence in Louisiana now means just that. Unless they're pardoned by the Governor, inmates today know they will never again see the outside world -- that they will die inside Angola prison. Tossing Away the Keys is their story. There is an audio track as well as a written transcript.
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Material Type: Case Study
Technical Format: Audio
Date Added to MERLOT: January 07, 2006
Date Modified in MERLOT: June 30, 2015
Submitter: Cathy Swift


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Primary Audience: College General Ed
Mobile Compatibility: Not specified at this time
Technical Requirements: Real Player
Language: English
Cost Involved: no
Source Code Available: no
Accessibility Information Available: no
Creative Commons: unsure


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Avatar for Karen Evans
7 years ago

Karen Evans (Faculty)

This site accurately portrays the anguish and despair of the inmates at Angola. Listening to the inmates talk about the Bill Cosby show or superhighways illustrates how different their life (and understanding of the outside world) is. An excellent touch in the material is the sounds of the prison; the guards, the dogs, the clank of the doors shutting and locking. The noises assist in illustrating what prison life is like for the prisoners.
Time spent reviewing site: 40 minutes