Bakhtin describes describes heteroglossia as a "special type of double-voiced discourse," which is exactly what is going on in "Public Secrets" (Bakhtin, 324). The first voice in this text is society's perception of what prisons are like. The beginning sequence makes it sound like prisons are carefully designed to look a certain way from the outside so that society feels safe. The three million dollar razor wire fence, metal detector, and gun tower may seem a little over the top for a seemingly calm women's prison, but civilians driving past will feel comforted seeing it. The "uncannily suburban, perfectly manicured, lawn complete with a rose-lined path and built in sprinkler system" are there solely to make outsiders feel like the inside of the prison also looks that way. However, the prisoners tell a very different story. The women report not getting sufficient cleaning products to clean their living areas, chipped paint, and treeless, grassless yards. Most of the prisoners interviewed said that they had the same nasty conceptions of prisons as the rest of society until they got to the women's prison, saw that there were women who were being punished for finally fighting back after a life of repression, and saw how disrespectful and unnecessarily crude the staff is to the women.