Ph.D, University of Michigan
Teaching and Research Interests
African American History and Critical Prison Studies,
Garrett Felber received a B.A. from Kalamazoo College in English and American Studies, an M.A. from Columbia University in African-American Studies, and a PhD from the University of Michigan in American Culture. His research and teaching have focused on twentieth-century African American social movements and U.S. social and political history, Black radicalism, and the carceral state. His forthcoming book, Those Who Know Don’t Say: The Nation of Islam, the Black Freedom Movement, and the Carceral State (UNC Press, January 2020) is a political history of the Nation of Islam which recenters the role of Black Nationalism and prison activism in the postwar Black freedom struggle and the rise of mass incarceration. His current research explores early debates around prison abolition within the civil rights movement during, and immediately after, the Second World War.
His next book projects include an edited collection of writings by political prisoner Martin Sostre, We Are All Political Prisoners: The Writings of Martin Sostre, and a history of the rise of mass incarceration told through the nation’s first and only “community prison,” The Norfolk Plan: The Community Prison in the Age of Mass Incarceration.
He is the lead organizer of the Making and Unmaking Mass Incarceration conference at the University of Mississippi in December 2019 and the Project Director for the Parchman Oral History Project (POHP), a collaborative oral history, archival, and documentary storytelling project on incarceration in Mississippi. In 2016, Felber founded Liberation Literacy, an abolitionist collective and radical reading grouphttps://mumiconference.com/ inside and outside Oregon prisons. He also spearheaded the Prison Abolition Syllabus, a collaborative reading list published by Black Perspectives which highlighted and contextualized prison strikes in 2016 and 2018.