Life in the Hole: Inside a Solitary Cell

A guided tour of the seven-by-eleven-foot space where inmates spend 23 hours a day.

Former hostage Shane Bauer visited this cell during his reporting trip to California’s Pelican Bay State Prison. Read his investigation of solitary confinement here. Click the dots on the image below to take a tour of the cell.

 

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Floor

SHU cells are 11 feet 7 inches by 7 feet 7 inches. With about eight feet of walking space, pacing—essential to quiet the mind—is difficult. Despite the cold cement floor, socks are forbidden.

 

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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