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Race and Mass Incarceration: Resources

Resources curated for Ms. Hedges' Race & Mass Incarceration Course, Fall '22.

Getting Started

Assignment Links:
Final Project Guidelines
Final Letter Rubric
Quick Links:
  • Bunn Library Online Resources Display of all online resources available through the library. 
  • Bunn Library Online Resource: Newspapers A direct link to resources in the library's collections that have newspapers (both present day and historical)
  • Bunn Library's Newspaper Libguide: An overview of newspapers and periodicals provided at Bunn Library, with additional links to recommended online sources. 
  • Noodletools Bunn Library's recommended citation management tool. Create citations and bibliographies is multiple citation styles, collaborate with teachers and classmates, and use the interactive notecards feature to organize your evidence. 
To access databases and other library services from home, you will be prompted to sign-in through Lawrenceville's EZproxy. When you click link for a Bunn database or service, the log-in screen (pictured below) will appear.
  • Username: first part of your email address (before the Example: asinai
  • Password: your email password
Having trouble with access? Email and include a description or screenshot of your issue. 

Tips for Researching Current Events

Researching current/recent events: When an event or something noteworthy happens, the information about that occurrence goes through a progression of stages. As facts are revealed and discussed, the story about that event becomes richer and often more clear. Information usually starts out on informal channels or through mass media. As time progresses, popular sources of information cover the event. Months and years later, scholarly sources of information may address the event as well.
Look at the timeline of information graphic below. When considering your topic, where in this cycle does it exist? Where might you go to gather information? 

Timeline of Information


Need help evaluating a source? Refer to the SIFT method outlined below. Think link a fact-checker, and read outside the source (look at wikipedia, other websites) to track the reporting on a particular topic. 



Understand the Issue

Before you can construct an effective argument, you must first have a solid understanding of your topic. Below are resources that provide a broad overview of a particular issue. As you read, take notes on key themes and ideas that you can use to research further. For very current topics that are constantly in flux, take a step back and see if you can tie that into broader themes. 
Points of View Reference Center: A full-text database containing essays and materials from leading political magazines, newspapers, radio and TV news transcripts, primary source documents, and reference books that present multiple sides of a current issue. The database provides 200 topics, each with an overview (objective background/description), point (affirmative argument), and counterpoint (opposing argument). Look at the "In the News" section for popular topics. (from Britannica): Explore both sides of highly-debated issues. Presented in a non-partisan format with supporting background information, statistics, and resources.
BalletopediaBallotpedia is a nonprofit and nonpartisan online political encyclopedia that covers federal, state, and local politics, elections, and public policy in the United States.
Pew Research Center: A nonpartisan American think tank based in Washington, D.C. It provides information on social issues, public opinion, and demographic trends shaping the United States and the world.
Statistical Collections:
Explore US Census Data (from the Census Bureau)Search interface for accessing and disseminating data and digital content from the U.S. Census Bureau.
Historical Statistics of the United States: Access data on social, behavioral, humanistic, and natural sciences including history, economics, government, finance, sociology, demography, education, law, natural resources, climate, religion, international migration, and trade - quantitative facts of American History.
Statista: Categorized into over 20 market sectors, Statista provides business customers, researchers, and the academic community with direct access to relevant quantitative facts on media, finance, politics, and many more areas of interest.
Can I use Wikipedia? 
Yes! Wikipedia is an excellent resources for gaining a basic understanding of a current topic. As with any reference source, you should not directly quote evidence from Wikipedia into your paper, but you may use it to inform the direction of your research. 

Newspapers and Periodicals

For assistance accessing library news resources, start with these helpful slides. Still feeling stuck? Contact a librarian via email or use the libchat at the bottom of these guide. 
Recommended resources are below: 
Access World News (from Newsbank): Provides full-text access to global, regional, and local news, including The TrentonianTrenton Times, and Princeton Packet
The New York Times (current digital edition): The current digital edition of the New York Times now available free on and off campus. NOTE: users must set up a pass for access. To learn how to set up your personal account visit our NYT SignUp Page.
NPR National News: Top stories in the US, with extended coverage of certain issues and events. 
New York Times - Prisons and Prisoners: Articles from the Times related to prisons, prisoners, and prison reform. Two recent articles to check out: Prisoners Like Me Are Being Held Hostage to Price Hikes and Louisiana Governor Calls for Inquiry Into Abuses at Juvenile Detention Center.
Flipster Magazines: The Flipster platform (for your web browser, phone, or tablet) contains access to periodicals such as The New Yorker, The Atlantic, and National Review. For help with access, refer to the slide deck. 
Sora (Magazines): Read full-text magazines, including The Economist, in the Sora mobile app or in a browser. To set up an account, select The Lawrenceville School as your school and login using your school gmail address. For login questions, contact a librarian. 
Wall Street Journal (current digital edition): The Wall Street Journal, also known as The Journal, is an American business-focused, English-language international daily newspaper based in New York City. For login access, please view the slide deck or contact
Washington Post (via ProQuest): The Washington Post is an American daily newspaper published in Washington, D.C. It is the most-widely circulated newspaper within the Washington metropolitan area and has a large national audience.
Want to check if the library has access to a specific newspaper, journal, or magazine? Search for the title in our eJournals portal.

Scholarly Source Collections: Online Resources from Bunn Library

Filter your search results to focus on magazine features and articles written by scholars. Who are the experts in your topic? How do you know?
HeinOnline: HeinOnline contains the entire Congressional Record, Federal Register, and Code of Federal Regulations, complete coverage of the U.S. Reports back to 1754, and entire databases dedicated to treaties, constitutions, case law, foreign relations, and U.S. Presidents. Additional collections include material on civil rights and social justice. 
JSTOR: A highly selective digital library of academic content in many formats and disciplines. Use the Advanced Search and limit to Articles and Books.
Project MUSE: A comprehensive selection of prestigious humanities and social sciences journals. Every journal is heavily indexed and peer-reviewed, with critically acclaimed articles by the most respected scholars in their fields.
ProQuest Databases: A vast library of periodicals (newspapers, magazines, and scholarly journals) covering a wide range of subjects. To search, select the Full Text checkbox so that your results yield only material that you can access, and use filters to limit results to scholarly articles.

Recommended Resources from the Web

Below are a sampling of resources from the general web that cover politics and policy, including new sources, educational institutions, and think tanks.
Though these sources are recommended based on a certain level of credibility, you should approach any source with a critical eye. Ask yourself: can you trace the claims that are being made? Does that publisher have an agenda that may impact the content it publishes? If you are unsure, go outside the source and trace the claims, and learn more about author/publisher on wikipedia. When in doubt, or if you get stuck, reach out to a librarian or your teacher! 
Brennan Center for Justice: End Mass Incarceration The Brennan Center for Justice at New York University School of Law is a nonprofit law and public policy institute.
Center for Public Integrity: The Center for Public Integrity is a nonprofit investigative news organization focused on inequality in the U.S. For publications related specifically to issues of democracy, explore the Democracy category. 
Congressional Research Service Reports Database: a public policy research institute of the United States Congress. Operating within the Library of Congress, it works primarily and directly for members of Congress and their committees and staff on a confidential, nonpartisan basis.
CQ Research: Offers original, comprehensive reporting and analysis on issues in the news. Each single-themed report is researched and written by a seasoned journalist, footnoted and professionally fact checked. NOTE: the library does not currently subscribe to CQ Researcher. A lot of content is available for free, but some may be behind a paywall. If you absolutely need to have something from this site that is unavailable, please send the citation information and link to Ms. Sinai
Equal Justice Initiative - Criminal Justice Reform: The Equal Justice Initiative is committed to ending mass incarceration and excessive punishment in the United States, to challenging racial and economic injustice, and to protecting basic human rights for the most vulnerable people in American society.
Families Against Mandatory Minimums (FAMM): Families Against Mandatory Minimums is an American nonprofit advocacy organization founded in 1991 to challenge mandatory sentencing laws and advocate for criminal justice reform. 
The Innocence Project: Innocence Project, Inc. is a 501 nonprofit legal organization that is committed to exonerating individuals who have been wrongly convicted, through the use of DNA testing and working to reform the criminal justice system to prevent future injustice.
Marshall Project: The Marshall Project is a nonprofit, online journalism organization focusing on issues related to criminal justice in the United States. 
Prison Policy Initiative - Issues: A think tank that uses research, advocacy, and organizing to show how over-criminalization harms individuals, our communities, and the national well-being.
The Sentencing Project: The Sentencing Project is a Washington, D.C.-based research and advocacy center working for decarceration or to reduce the use of incarceration in the United States and to address racial disparities in the criminal justice system.
Southern Poverty Law Center The Southern Poverty Law Center is internationally recognized for its groundbreaking history of seeking racial justice, working in partnership with communities to dismantle white supremacy and advancing the human rights of all people, in the South and beyond. 
Vera Institute: Founded in 1961 to advocate for alternatives to money bail in New York City, Vera is now a national organization that partners with impacted communities and government leaders for change, and is fighting to end mass incarceration.  

Need help? Chat with a Librarian