Mikhail Khodorkovsky was held as a political prisoner by the Russian government for ten years, until he was pardoned in 2013. His contribution in this issue is drawn from his book My Fellow Prisoners, to be published on February 24 by the Overlook Press, Peter Mayer Publishers, Inc. (March 2015)
I’m writing these notes because I want people who care about these things to know what I have personally experienced in prison. Over time I’ve turned from an ordinary victim into an interested observer, and I’ve discovered that for many people the prison world remains terra incognita. And yet in our country one in every hundred people is currently in prison; one in ten (maybe by now one in seven) of the male population passes through prison at some point in their lives.