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Bad: The Autobiography of James Carr

James Carr

Apr 2016


Trade Paper

$16.95 US
($21.99 CAN)
978-1-941110-38-6 | 9781941110386
1-941110-38-X | 194111038X

28 per carton



Criminals & Outlaws

Spring 2016

Title Rights: W

Product Safety: Information Not Available

Published by Three Rooms Press

An unapologetic, brutal memoir from notorious 60s career criminal James Carr. BAD covers Carr's life from his first arrest for burning down his school at age 9, through merciless stints in San Quentin, where he shared a cell with famed Soledad Brother George Jackson, through his tragic post-incarceration murder in San Jose in 1972. A savage indictment of the American penal system, this classic release has new significance as part of a growing, urgent demand for criminal justice reform.

     I've been struggling all my life to get beyond the choice of living on my knees or dying on my feet. It's time we lived on our feet.
     As a kid my rebellion was pure: unthinking, arbitrary, devilish; sometimes for fun or because I was bored, more often because I saw adults standing over me at every turn -- parents, teachers and preachers -- and sought ways to get even, to avenge my submission. I was always caught and punished in such a way that my feelings were only intensified and reinforced.
     Along with the stick, of course, they always showed me the carrot: clothes, cars, cigarettes and whisky and women -- telling me that to get these things I'd have to be a success. Telling me out of the other corner of their mouths that I'd been born to be a failure. Always taunting, jeering, and lecturing me. I was completely disoriented, caught between acceptance and rejection of an alien world at once fascinating and disgusting. It's a trap, the trap. I became a rebel -- still caught, but proudly defiant.
     --James Carr