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College in prison : reading in an age of mass incarceration

Author: Daniel Karpowitz
Publisher: New Brunswick, New Jersey : Rutgers University Press, [2017] ©2017
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
"The nationally renowned Bard Prison Initiative demonstrates how the liberal arts can alter the landscape inside prisons by expanding access to the transformative power of American higher education. American colleges and universities have made various efforts to provide prisoners with access to education. However, few of these outreach programs presume that incarcerated men and women can rise to the challenge of a
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Genre/Form: History
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: Daniel Karpowitz
ISBN: 9780813584126 0813584124 9780813584133 0813584132 9780813584140 0813584140
OCLC Number: 948338953
Description: xxii, 208 pages ; 23 cm
Contents: Introduction: A Note on Text --
1. Getting In: Conflicting Voices and the Politics of College in Prison --
2. Landscapes: BPI and Mass Incarceration --
3. Going to Class: Reading Crime and Punishment --
4. The First Graduation: Figures of Speech --
5. Replication and Conclusions: College, Prison, and Inequality in America.
Responsibility: Daniel Karpowitz.

Abstract:

"The nationally renowned Bard Prison Initiative demonstrates how the liberal arts can alter the landscape inside prisons by expanding access to the transformative power of American higher education. American colleges and universities have made various efforts to provide prisoners with access to education. However, few of these outreach programs presume that incarcerated men and women can rise to the challenge of a truly rigorous college curriculum. The Bard Prison Initiative, however, is different. As this compelling new book reveals, BPI has fostered a remarkable transformation in the lives of thousands of prisoners. College in Prison chronicles how, since 2001, Bard College has provided a high-quality liberal arts education--with courses ranging from anthropology to Mandarin to advanced mathematics--to New York State prisoners who, upon release, have gone on to rewarding careers and elite graduate and professional programs. Yet this is more than just a story of exceptional individuals triumphing against the odds. It is a study in how institutions can be reimagined and reformed in order to give people from all walks of life a chance to enrich their minds and expand their opportunities. Drawing upon fifteen years of experience as a director of and teacher within the Bard Prison Initiative, Daniel Karpowitz tells the story of BPI's development from a small pilot project to a nationwide network. At the same time, he recounts the educational histories of individual students, tracking both their intellectual progress and the many obstacles they must face. Analyzing the transformative encounter between two characteristically American institutions--the undergraduate college and the modern penitentiary--he makes a powerful case for why liberal arts education is still vital to the future of democracy in the United States"--

"This book tells the story of the Bard Prison Initiative--a unique example of academic excellence unfolding inside high-security prisons across New York. Through the Initiative, hundreds of incarcerated men and women go to Bard College full-time while still in prison, and thrive at the highest academic levels the college has to offer. This remarkable student body is demographically identical to the larger population of people in New York's prisons, and thus quite unlike those students who usually have access to, and succeed in, America's leading liberal arts colleges. Those who have graduated and left prison are thriving in for-private companies, leading service agencies, and completing further study at elite graduate schools for academia and the professions. The rigor and depth of what and how these students learn, and the careers they pursue once home, force us to rethink preconceptions about who is in prison, what American systems of punishment really mean, and the continued relevance of liberal learning"--

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"Karpowitz moves between scholarly examinations and novelistic narrative recreations of his classes that allow the students' voices (albeit filtered) to be heard ... These stories provide a fresh Read more...

 
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