Listen to Bars and Shadows: The Prison Poems of Ralph Chaplin on your phone!
Ralph Chaplin and many other prominent members of the Industrial Workers of the World were imprisoned under the Espionage Act of 1917 as the United States entered World War I. As with Socialist presidential candidate Eugene V. Debs, these activists were accused of undermining recruiting efforts and the draft - even of encouraging soldiers to desert. Though they never gained the universal popularity of his anthem "Solidarity Forever," the poems and songs in this volume - composed during his four years in prison - represent the defiant attitude of a true rebel in the face of persecution. - Summary by Ben Adams