This course requires a significant time commitment outside of class sessions. Students will be required to attend one Saturday workshop from 10:00-4:00pm in February and visit a detention facility to lead workshops on Saturday mornings in April and May.
Rates of detention amongst girls in the US continue to increase even as overall rates of incarceration amongst youth have steadily declined in the last decade. Yet, because girls represent a proportionally smaller population within the juvenile justice system fewer resources are allocated to address the underlying causes of incarceration and recidivism amongst young women ages 12-19. This course investigates the causes and consequences of incarceration amongst girls and women. In this course students, design and facilitate an arts and education program for incarcerated girls. What are the unique concerns presented by incarcerated female populations? What must we understand about the policing of gender and sexuality in order to meet the needs of incarcerated girls and women? What role does trauma play in the experiences of girls remitted to the juvenile justice system? What is the role of the arts in empowering incarcerated youth? Exploring these and other questions enables students to better understand the role of the Prison Industrial Complex in defining and policing gender roles and sexual minorities. Readings include Global Lockdown: Race, Gender, and the Prison-Industrial Complex by Julia Sudbury; Queer Injustice by Andrea Ritchie, and Girls Like Us by Rachel Lloyd.