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Reflection on Prison Experience

han yu's picture

Throughout this semester, so many memorable things happened that stood out to me about the topics of dehumanization, critical reflection on personal narratives, the importance of multidimensional understandings about social issues. However, I want to reflect on our experience of final evaluation in the last lesson and talk about a major concern that has been becoming more and more obvious for me.

Event Reflection

Shirah Kraus's picture

Abby, Han, Julia, and I put together our posters and arranged them on easels. Our opening reception was a great opportunity to engage with our audience. I enjoyed discussing our weekly visits to RCF with a friend from my Arabic class. We shared some of our experiences and I talked about my project and what I learned. I also enjoyed a conversation with a professor and was inspired to make some changes to the website. It was exciting to see everyone’s projects, to discuss mine and show the website, to talk with others in the 360, including the professors. The food situation was great—Meera and Tong helped me pick it up from Wyndam (Tong took care of ordering and arranging it). I think the exhibit reached a large audience and people enjoyed and learned from it.

Educating Convicts [And Ex-Convicts!]: Building Community Connections

Butterfly Wings's picture

In America, as we have often discussed in class, incarceration is more often viewed as a space designed to punish, rather than rehabilitate or empower people to escape a system designed to capture and isolate them.  Further, the prison system tends to punish a very select group of individuals, those labelled “dangerous” by our white, patriarchal society. It is rigged to take in greater numbers of the people deemed most contrary to said world, as evidenced by the fact that the numbers of black women in prison is swelling the most (Halkovic).  Removing them from general society not only allows society to create many lies around them, but keeps them from expressing their own needs and having them resolved. Out of the public eye, they are easily forgotten.

Validating Bodies (Education in Prison Paper)

meerajay's picture

Validating Bodies

We cannot seem to go without analysis in this class, in this 360. We thrive in it; it engenders our thinking about our experiences in the prison within the context of the larger narrative. We need it in order to affirm to ourselves that the affect of our presence, regardless of what our intentions may be, is empowering. In this essay, I explore the true purpose of higher education in prison, the kind of education that I advocate for, and the reasons behind this.

Ideologies of merit, deservingness, and blame embedded within and influencing the prison industrial complex are often entangled with, both physically and mentally, the body. This is a concept that I explored in my earliest Sunday reflection post on September 13th:

spirituality + meiner reading (jody’s missed tues dec 1 + anne’s missed thurs dec 3)

rb.richx's picture

some of my reactions to meiner's chapters here come also in the wake of my reflection on the silence exercise shirah and i created, as well as reading some of anne’s pieces that involve religion and spirituality.

meiner starts the chapter in a bit of a critique of the ways in which the adult participants in her classroom wrote their autobiographies in a practically formulaic way (“the redemption genre”).

i understand this critique on the level of the institution. she questions the limited tools that are given to these individuals to process their incarceration and traumas, which definitely has a major hand in shaping the internalization of the criminal, deviance, and incarceration narratives.