The effects of prison libraries

by Stephanie Chasteen on February 20, 2012

I’ve been a staunch advocate of education in prisons for quite a few years, though more through serendipity than a lifetime interest.  I was assigned to do an article on prisoner recidivism (ie., what helps keep them from going out of prison when they get out) for the now-defunct magazine Science & Spirit many years ago.   The research for that article took me to the Prison University Project at San Quentin, which is the only place that a prisoner can get a degree of any kind in California prisons. I’ve written a lot about that program in another post here.

I donate to that program frequently, and if you’re looking for a worthy cause, they’re doing very good work.

I’ve also got a special place in my heart for libraries, since I’m the daughter of a librarian and I studied librarians in my undergraduate degree in social psychology.

So, while I try not to post too many of the lists from the online degree program websites, I really liked this one:

15 Amazing Effects of Prison Libraries

It’s a nice little list, worth checking out.  These are the most underserved populations by far; those of us in education might consider attending more to prisoners and other people on the margins.

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