Prize-Winning Author Says U.S. Has a ‘Third World Police’

marlon james police united states
WPA Pool—Getty Images Author Marlon James winning author of "A Brief History of Seven Killings" speaks at the ceremony for the Man Booker Prize for Fiction 2015 on October 13, 2015 in London, England.

Marlon James says he is alarmed by the actions and authority of police in the U.S.

Novelist Marlon James, who won the 2015 Man Booker Prize for his book A Brief History of Seven Killings, told an audience in Paris on Sunday that the U.S. has a “third world police” that carries out “state sanctioned violence” against African Americans.

“What people like me find alarming is there is almost state-sanctioned violence in America, particularly with the police,” said James, the Guardian reports. “America has developed a weird kind of third world police, which horrifies people like me and my friends from Kenya or Nigeria.”

James was born in Jamaica and moved to the U.S. to teach and write, and both of his parents were police officers in Jamaica. His prizewinning novel chronicled the Prize WinningJame history of an assassination attempt on Bob Marley and he has said his next book will be an African Game of Thrones.

“The whole idea that you are beyond the law you are serving and protecting, and that killing people will not have consequences, is something that we who migrated to America thought we had got away from,” he said. “This sort of unquestioned authority, straight up killing people is why Black Lives Matter happened.”

James had been speaking at the literary event Festival America.

[The Guardian]

Tap to read full story

Your browser is out of date. Please update your browser at http://update.microsoft.com


Dear TIME Reader,

As a regular visitor to TIME.com, we are sure you enjoy all the great journalism created by our editors and reporters. Great journalism has great value, and it costs money to make it. One of the main ways we cover our costs is through advertising.

The use of software that blocks ads limits our ability to provide you with the journalism you enjoy. Consider turning your Ad Blocker off so that we can continue to provide the world class journalism you have become accustomed to.

The TIME Team