PEN Festival: “Frozen in Time–Racist Traditions and the Prison System” & “The Lock and Key”

Frozen in Time: Racist Traditions and the Prison System

Saturday, May 04, 3 – 4:30pm

Cooper Union: Frederick P. Rose Auditorium 41 Cooper Square, NYC

With Soffiyah Elijah, Laura Kurgan, Marc Mauer, Susan Tucker. Moderated by Jackson Taylor

In the United States, the growth of the prison industry is largely a result of policy changes—not actual crime rates. The punishing post-release design assures that ever larger segments of the population—particularly people of color, the young, and the mentally ill—are thwarted when trying to re-integrate into their communities. This panel discusses this form of institutionalized racism and how we can implement change through the legal system and through education.

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Literature: The Lock and Key

Saturday, May 04, 7 – 8:30p

The Public Theater 425 Lafayette Street, NYC

With Shane Bauer and Laura Secor

The prisoner’s imagination often pens journals, stories, letters, poems, or legal briefs. Writing has the power to enhance critical thinking, afford solace, and refine itself through practice. These writings might later become the currency of betrayal, confiscation, retribution, surveillance, damning evidence, and even result in further confinement. Shane Bauer, who spent more than two years in an Iranian prison, discusses with journalist Laura Secor how writing can be used to both liberate and oppress.

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These events are part of PEN World Voices Festival of International Literature, New York City, April 29-May 5, 2013. For a complete schedule of events, visit:

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