The problem with being in prison is not that you have a thin mattress, the problem is isolation

Few years after his final release from prison in 2009, Varg Vikernes,one of the most influential individuals in the history of black metal, started his Youtube channel in 2012. Named “ThuleanPerspective” the channel contains various types of videos including and not limited to tutorials, news, reviews, discussions as well as personal viewpoints of the black metal legend himself. The opinion based videos of Varg Vikernes touch upon diverse topics, covering subjects such as life, nationalism, religion, marriage end etc. On January 23 of 2016 Vikernes released yet another opinion based video where he speaks about the truth about the Norwegian prisons by sharing his own personal experience of being locked up. Titled “About Prison, Breivik & Isolation” the video breaks the false ideas about the Norwegian prisons that are usually described and presented as “hotels” by the media outlets. The so called “hotels” are refereed to modern prisons where there are showers, toilets, refrigerators and sometimes even TV’s inside the cells in contrast to the standard or “old-fashioned” prisons. According to Vikernes the notion of modern prisons being “hotels” is completely misguided as all those formerly mentioned items are not there for the comfort of the prisoner but because it is easier to clean the cell and more importantly to isolate the prisoner. As Varg states if the prisoner has all these inside his cell than the prisoner is left with no purpose to live it and is locked up inside 24/7 or 23/7 if he is allowed to have a walk in an isolated yards (usually alone). According to Vikernes the modern prisons have 20 or 30 % more suicide rates compared to the standard ones. “This kind of prisons rob the prisoner off their dignity and also remove all the sympathy for them if they complain” states Vikernes referring to Andreas Brevik, a mass murderer ridiculed in the whole world press for complaining about serving in a “hotel” type cell. “They do not understand how it is like to be in such a ”hotel”. They do not understand how isolation works” claims Varg and recalls an incident of a “tough” guy having a mental breakdown after a single day in isolation. “The problem with being in prison is not that you have a thin mattress, the problem is isolation. The problem is being robbed off your dignity. The problem is being treated like a junkie. The problem is being treated like a child“.


– Gayane Hakobyan


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