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Sarah's picture


"Knowledge is an island surrounded by a sea of mystery"- Chet Raymond, page 30

One of my go-to questions with any sort of presentation, be it a play, a school lesson, a presentation, etc, is "Is it accessible?"  When something is presented to me, I don't like to leave feeling absolutely clueless.  Maybe this is a privileged state of mind: that I should have some ownership over the thoughts or ideas that people present.  The LBCP book talks a lot about doing things for yourself (ie: not everything needs to be performed or presented) and allowing them to be vague.  This is making me realize that maybe some performances and presentations aren’t meant to be easily accessible, and you are supposed to just enjoy the ambiguity, and also makes me realize not everything I do necessarily needs to be shared (which I struggle with…if someone doesn’t know I did something, is it real?) These are ideas I strongly "react" to instead of "reflect" on (I believe that is the language used in the book at one point, but I lent my copy to a classmate and can't double check at the moment).  I react by feeling uncomfortable with keeping something to myself or by trying to be okay with vagueness; I think to myself “okay, I want to have an open mind, but I feel like I can only be so open until my brain falls out”.  But at the same time, the quote above really appeals to me because I feel like it is vagueness, floating around something concrete that I can hold on to. 

Uninhibited's picture

Abstract Stories


I’ve been thinking a lot about the images I have of incarcerated women, and can’t help but be ashamed at my lack of knowledge of the topic before this summer. Before this summer, the media influenced all of my images of incarcerated people. I don’t have any family members or close friends who have had any contact with the legal system in the US. I think that as a result, in high school I was definitely guilty of projecting very negative feelings towards those who “have committed a crime.” In a sense, I really placed a lot of blame on them for not making the types of decisions that my family and I have made. In high school, I do know people who ran intro trouble with the law, specifically for drug-related offenses, and I used to think that it was their fault. I probably felt that way because I grew up in the same environment, went to the same school, but somehow I ended up attending an afterschool program instead of doing drugs, I was definitely to all of the other factors that contribute to incarceration.


Michaela's picture

Doing life vs. living life

I find it really interesting the distinction that Betty Heron makes between "doing life" (as is suggested by her "lifer" status in prison) and "living life". I like that she is taking on a proactive attitude, that she will not be confined by the boundaries of her current situation, but I also wondered at her choice to say that she "dealt herself" (Doing Life, Zehr, pg. 68) her circumstances, given the nature of what we have discussed in class, that arrests and imprisonments (life sentences or otherwise) are often the choice or the "fault" of the unjust criminal justice system and not the incarcerated person themself. The sociological side of me also wants to think of Betty (though she has trouble labeling herself with her first name) as socially and environmentally influenced by many factors that are and were out of her control, both now, in prison, and before the incident that wound her up where she is today. But given the relative "innocence" of a white woman in the criminal justice system, as we have read in several texts for this 360, is she as much a victim of her circumstances as a woman of color might be? 

HSBurke's picture


Today, I sat in on an interview in Admissions and I think I may just have solidified a prospective transfer student's choice of Bryn Mawr by gushing about our 360 and how awesome it is. She told me after that our 360 sounded exactly like what she was looking for. Just thought I'd share. Wheee!

sara.gladwin's picture

activism confusion.

I struggled a lot in answering the activism question, which is why I ended up commenting more on other people’s ideas rather then putting any new ideas out. I think they are some really creative ideas here that I would definitely like to be a part of. My struggle to think about activism is also why this is a separate post… I do not feel like I answered the question and that some of the things I ended up writing were less relevant to question but still felt very relevant to the class in general and I wanted to share.

HSBurke's picture

“Silence has the rusty taste of shame.”

If you all haven't seen this story yet, definitely take a look. I can't even comprehend the amout of bravery it takes to break the silence like she did. 

Here's a link to the reprint of the story since Amherst's site seems to be down. 

Sarah's picture

video about stop and frisk

I know some of you have seen this video, but figured it might be a good idea to post it here:

sara.gladwin's picture

Where are the Children?

I couldn't help but feel the cover of the book Offending Women was most relevant to my paper; the face of the child who has been incarcerated alongside his mother. In my memo, I focused on the way in which the needs and voices of the children and family of those who are incarcerated are impacted and overshadowed by their relation to a person who has been imprisoned. I look at some of the ways in which they too have become incriminated into the same system

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