Throughout her adult life, Käthe Kollwitz lived in one of Berlin's most impoverished neighborhoods, where her physician husband practiced. She was first attracted to the strength of the proletariat, a characteristic that she found beautiful; it was only with the passage of time that she began to feel intense compassion for their suffering. She saw their plight in tumultuous circumstances-the regime of Kaiser Wilhelm, World War I, the rise of Nazism, and eventually World War II. The motherly concern that pervades her work was heightened even more with the death of her son in World War I. In this lithograph, Kollwitz explores the internal lives of prisoners, quite possibly detained without just cause.