REPORTER’S NOTEBOOK | Creative writing in prison

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Who would want to teach creative writing in a prison?

Jennifer Bowen Hicks does.  But her reasons for starting the Minnesota Prison Writing Project in 2011 are not so simple. 

According to Jennifer, the program works because writing or reading is more than an escape from darkness or monotony for those behind bars.

“Art helps us remember and even imagine different ways to live in the world, different ways to live inside our own heart and mind. It engenders empathy, creativity, and self-awareness.

90% of incarcerated individuals will someday leave prison. It’s not just humane or idealistic to give them tools to lead an examined life, it’s logical. I believe that’s true for all of us, not just those behind bars,” she said.

Read the full story about what instructors, the Department of Correction Officials and students are saying about the Minnesota Prison Writing Workshop in about a week in the Daily Planet.

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