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Is William Martinez Not Our Brother?

Twenty Years of the Prison Creative Arts Project

Buzz Alexander

Prisons are an invisible, but dominant, part of American society: the United States incarcerates more people than any other nation in the world. In Michigan, the number of prisoners rose from 3,000 in 1970 to more than 50,000 by 2008, a shift that Buzz Alexander witnessed firsthand when he came to teach at the University of Michigan.

Is William Martinez Not Our Brother? describes the University of Michigan's Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP), a pioneering program founded in 1990 that provides university courses, a nonprofit organization, and a national network for incarcerated youth and adults in Michigan juvenile facilities and prisons.

By giving incarcerated individuals an opportunity to participate in the arts, PCAP enables them to withstand and often overcome the conditions and culture of prison, the policies of an incarcerating state, and the consequences of mass incarceration.

Purchase Paperback from Publisher

Publisher: University of Michigan Press
Imprint: University of Michigan Press
Published: 01/2010
Pages: 328
Subject: Social Science - Penology, Education - Teaching Methods & Materials/Arts & Humanities
Print ISBN: 9780472051090
eBook ISBN: 9780472900374

DESCRIPTION

Prisons are an invisible, but dominant, part of American society: the United States incarcerates more people than any other nation in the world. In Michigan, the number of prisoners rose from 3,000 in 1970 to more than 50,000 by 2008, a shift that Buzz Alexander witnessed firsthand when he came to teach at the University of Michigan.

Is William Martinez Not Our Brother? describes the University of Michigan's Prison Creative Arts Project (PCAP), a pioneering program founded in 1990 that provides university courses, a nonprofit organization, and a national network for incarcerated youth and adults in Michigan juvenile facilities and prisons.

By giving incarcerated individuals an opportunity to participate in the arts, PCAP enables them to withstand and often overcome the conditions and culture of prison, the policies of an incarcerating state, and the consequences of mass incarceration.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Buzz Alexander is Arthur F. Thurnau Professor of English Language and Literature, College of Literature, Science, and the Arts, at the University of Michigan and was Carnegie National Professor of the Year in 2005.

REVIEWS

"PCAP looks beyond past mistakes and personal shortcomings to find the beauty and creative energies that help to heal the hurts we've done to others. They have not forgotten that we are human too! . . . Their program has given me a way to reach people that I would otherwise never reach. For that, I owe PCAP everything. They are my lifeline that I cling to."
—Bryan Picken, incarcerated artist

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