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"The Long Term: Resisting Life Sentences" - Readings and Celebration


The Long Term: Resisting Life Sentences - Readings and Celebration
Wednesday, December 5th, 6:30-9PM
Organized by the
Prison and Neighborhood Arts Project and The Invisible Institute

Join us for a celebration of the new anthology, The Long Term: Resisting Life Sentences Working Toward Freedom. For this event, we will be joined by editors Alice Kim, Erica Meiners, Audrey Petty, Beth Richie, and contributors Tara Betts, Daniel Cooper, Monica Cosby, Mathilda de Dios, Krista Franklin, Mary L. Johnson, Patrick Pursley, David Stovall, Damon Williams, and others. There will also be a showcase of brief videos and artwork created by PNAP students and visual artists featured in the book.

“Long-term offenders,” or “LTOs,” is the state's term for those it condemns to effective death by imprisonment. Often serving sentences of sixty to eighty years, like the rest of the United States' prison population they are disproportionately poor and non-white. The Long Term brings these often-silenced voices to light, offering a powerful indictment of the prison-industrial complex. This striking collection of essays gives voice to people both inside and outside prison struggling for liberation, dismantles claims that the "tough on crime" agenda and LTO sentencing keep us safe, and reveals the white supremacism and patriarchy upon which the prison system rests. In its place, the contributors propose a range of far-reaching reforms and raise the even-more radical demand of abolition, drawing on the experience of campaigns in the United States and beyond.

Prison + Neighborhood Arts Project is a visual arts and humanities project that connects teaching artists and scholars to men at Stateville Maximum Security Prison through classes, workshops and guest lectures. Classes offered include subjects ranging from poetry, visual arts, and film study to political theory, social studies, and history. Classes are held once a week, on a 14 week semester schedule. Each course results in finished projects—visual art, creative writing and critical essays—with specific audiences and neighborhoods in mind. These works are then exhibited and read in neighborhood galleries and cultural centers.

The arts and humanities have always provided essential vocabularies for discussing challenging topics and pushing the boundaries of our thinking. The goal of P+NAP is to foster this kind of exploratory thinking with incarcerated students at Stateville, who have a wealth of knowledge and keen perspectives to share about the world around us.

More information on their website, here.

The Invisible Institute is a journalism production company based in the South Side of Chicago. A core staff works with a farflung network of collaborators in our ongoing projects.

Current areas of our work include Investigations, Citizens Police Data Project (, Youth/Police Project, Wrongful Conviction Unit, and the View From the Ground.

The activities of the Invisible Institute cohere around a central principle: we as citizens have co-responsibility with the government for maintaining respect for human rights and, when abuses occur, for demanding they be addressed.

More information on their website, here.

Earlier Event: December 1
December 1st Farmers Market
Later Event: December 8
December 8th Farmers Market