Chloe Haimson. 
“Redemption Performance in Exoneration and Parole: Two Pathways Home.” Forthcoming in Qualitative Sociology.

This article, drawing from interviews, provides an examination of life after prison for two distinct groups returning from prison: people on parole and people exonerated of crimes. There is extensive research concerning people’s experiences after prison; however, the post-prison trajectories of those who have been subsequently exonerated after being falsely convicted of crimes is a far less studied topic. Exonerees benefit after prison from social support arising from various sources such as their families and non-profit organizations. Social networks allow exonerees to be successful in the job market, as well as assist them financially.

I find that with the help of dense social networks exonerees must perform their redemption in order to have their basic needs met. Redemption performances are labor that aim to prove that previously incarcerated individuals are worthy of assistance from society. The various negative social and economic consequences of prison are more notable for individuals on parole who are less likely than exonerees to be equipped with networks to draw on for their redemption performances. However, despite exonerees having more support during their return home, they, like individuals on parole, were also left feeling isolated, lost, and de-humanized. I show how resources and the brokering of stigma of incarceration leads to diverging outcomes for people returning from prison, but that trauma still remains.