Hannah Arendt Center presents:
Courage to Be Program Formal Dinner Series with Guest Speaker Laurie Jo Reynolds
We Should Not Have Policies We are Afraid to Talk About: Drawing at the Extremes of the U.S. Criminal Legal System
Monday, March 9, 2020
Blithewood, Levy Institute
6:00 pm – 8:00 pm
We Should Not Have Policies We are Afraid to Talk About: Drawing at the Extremes of the U.S. Criminal Legal SystemThis event occurs on: Mon. March 9, 6 pm – 8 pm
This new era of decarceration has brought significant attention to prisons and policing but little to challenge the most extreme and isolating punishments both inside and outside prison: solitary confinement and public conviction registries. People labeled and targeted by such laws have been politicized and demonized in popular culture and in state legislatures—and don’t often have opportunities to represent themselves in the public sphere. The policies directed at them are taken for granted by and invisible to most of the public. Reynolds will discuss how these laws represent a missed opportunity for both prevention and justice, and the roles these retributive extremes play in upholding the carceral state. Changing these laws, she argues, requires putting them on the criminal justice agenda, which has to be done by the people who carry them out, especially through grassroots organizing campaigns. She will describe two collaborations with justice advocates, state officials, cultural workers, and people directly affected by violence and incarceration to describe their own conditions of social exclusion and write themselves into civic life.
Laurie Jo Reynolds is an assistant professor of art at the University of Illinois at Chicago. Laurie Jo is well-known for her art activism and work combating the dehumanizing aspects of the criminal justice system in the United States. She led the successful campaign to close the Tamms Correctional Center and is currently focused on eliminating criminal registries in Illinois.
This event is by invitation only.