Class Year


Document Type

Student Research Paper

Date of Creation

Spring 2020

Department 1

Africana Studies


COVID-19 has exposed a variety of issues and insecurities in our world since its eruption in 2020. While it is heavily discussed, debated and researched, much of the virus’ impact is not covered in communities and areas where marginalized bodies suffer disproportionately. One of the most undermined and blanketed populations in our country during the time of the pandemic (and for decades before) is the prison population, which has seen soaring cases and deaths since the virus first touched down in the states. Much of the prison population consist of black men and women and sadly mirror the same health inequalities their non-incarcerated peers face everyday due to racial disparities within medicine, education, job status and housing. An institution that should be designed to rehabilitate convicts as a positive contribution to society has once again been caught in its blatant strategy to hold black bodies captive with an unfair and racist blueprint to further racial equality. This paper serves to analyze what has led to these disproportionate cases and deaths within prisons and how the industrial prison complex and the long history of racist incarceration policies and agendas have exacerbated the effects of the COVID-19 virus on incarcerated men and women.


Written for AFS 130: Introduction to African-American Studies

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.