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Sunday Post

smalina's picture

Though we spent only half an hour working in the book group after our tour of the prison on Friday, we ended up in an intense and interesting conversation about Brothers and Keepers--particularly about the passage in which John writes about his mother. Wideman discusses his mother's struggle to hold both her son's humanity and the fact that he broke the law and is living as a convicted criminal because of it. She must see him as a whole, incorporating both of those elements of his personhood. Our discussion made me realize that I often go into the prison expecting a certain response from the people inside.

Sunday Post 11.8

han yu's picture
In this Thursday's lesson, we applied the "barometer" method that was introduced to me in Anne's class. Two signs saying "agree" and "disagree" were pasted on the walls across two sides of the room. We came up with several statements for people to stand their positions. If we feel strongly agree with the statement, we should stand by the "agree" side, and vice versa. The barometer is a scale so people can also stand in between, whether right in the middle or nearer to one side.  This barometer effectively got people involved at once. Comparing to my prior experience, if we started introducing our topic just by sitting around and discuss, many people would be in silent.

Sunday Post

smalina's picture

Like many of the people who have already posted, I felt a noticeable improvement in how the class ran on Friday. On a basic level, our conversations about guidelines seemed to help people feel more comfortable calling on one another to speak, and calling each other out when people spoke out of turn or spoke up too frequently. The small group format seemed to work well again, offering new members the opportunity to become more comfortable speaking to a couple people before speaking to the larger group. Though we had many activities and they were all very involved, the atmosphere felt even more laid back and informal than the last few have--we were able to laugh with each other from the very beginning, and this mood seemed to carry through until we ended class. 

Sunday Post 11.1

han yu's picture

This week's Thursday lesson has been the most uncertain one for me since the first time I started going. (One of the reasons was that I forgot to bring my passport and I did not realize that until we were arriving at the facility. Fortunately, I used my Bryn Mawr ID and they let me in.) Most of the reasons of my uneasiness came from my carelessness and I was not responsible enough during the lesson planning. I did not do enough research about the Vagina Monologue and therefore overlooked the controversies and criticisms toward it.

Dialogue through Dance

Joie Rose's picture

As a dancer, you are constantly walking that ever so slight line between the paradoxical gesture of making yourself at once as small and as big as possible. Our bodies are both our instruments, vessels that we bend and tone and stretch and compress to convey our deepest expressions of human emotion, and our greatest tragedy. The body will never achieve what it sets out to do; you can always bend further, tone more, stretch farther and compress smaller. You can always do more. And because you are always reaching for the unattainable, the dialogue we strive to achieve becomes lost in the inaccessible in-human.

Building Voice via Rehearsal

Butterfly Wings's picture

     Voice is a quality of humans distinct to each. It is that set of experiences and moments that shape one’s particular perspectives on life in a way that is all consuming, allowing the tastes of one to bleed through words and express one’s essence. This concept of voice allows for a give and take of shaping experiences. One can accumulate new ideas and reshape their essence at any given time. Theater works as a mechanism within which one can alter their voice uniquely, as it creates a “third space” by “[establishing] connections between groups that otherwise might not come into contact and… imagining communities different from those we have at present” (Fraden 23), thus permitting one to examine oneself with new perspectives.

"School" interfering with Prison Education

The Unknown's picture

In order to negotiate the silences and opportunities for voice, one cannot ignore the power inherent in language. Race, class, religion, and all other aspects of one’s identity and background construct the shape of language. In choosing to forge the distance through sliding doors, elevators, and body checks, I am implicated in the dialogue of justifying and questioning our words at the prison. I am redefining and manipulating the power of language through deciding to communicate with voice and claiming that it has reason and should be acknowledged. I am unsure, inarticulate, and maneuvering through the unexplained implications of “teaching” and designing a “classroom setting.”

Justice, Justice, Justice: proclaiming on the stage and off

Shirah Kraus's picture

“Justice, Justice, Justice,” I remember Julia proclaiming her lines as Shakespeare’s Isabella in Measure for Measure (v.i.29). My mind jumped to these words when I read Antigone’s line in The Burial at Thebes: “Justice, Justice” (Heaney 29). Both Isabella and Antigone are bold female characters that stand up for what they believe in, Isabella for chastity and Antigone for divine law and her brother’s body. Both women have a strong voice despite their inferior social status as women. Like them, I aspire to loudly proclaim, “Justice,” to fight for what is right and to not be afraid of death or fear.

Voice Body Dialogue

han yu's picture

       As we read through Fraden’s investigation of Jones’ techniques in facilitating the Medea Project, it is hard for us to miss a salient characteristic of Jones of being mighty, tough and directive. There is even a whole section discussing her rants toward the women in their project. While some people may doubtfully question her toughness toward those women who are already in a disadvantaged position, I genuinely want to praise the courage and effectiveness of her style. Principles, disciplines and directions are essential in the formation of a dialogue. Principles can help equalizing people’s opportunities of voicing themselves. It is usually the truth that, breaking into a speech or conversation of someone else’s is one of the hardest thing to do.