Corcoran State Prison

photo by Melanie Hofmann

Photojournalist Kristin Lyseggen profiles nine current and former inmates in her new book "The Women of San Quentin: Soul Murder of Transgender Women in Male Prisons."Surrounded by convicted murderers and rapists, she writes, they are often forced to fight for their lives on their way to womanhood inside some of the world’s most dangerous prisons for men. She and Daniella Tavake, one of those profiled in the book, share intimate parts of their stories with host Eric Jansen on this week's Out in the Bay.

It’s early. About 5 in the morning and I’m heading south on Highway 5 toward Corcoran, a farming town of about 24,000 people. However, that population count is misleading. About half of the people living in Corcoran are locked up in two of the state’s largest prisons just south of downtown.