Event explores prison life

Movie is first in four-part series; will focus on what prison life is like

BRADLEY GAMBLE, Evergreen reporter

WSU students are welcome to attend a free community event to kick off the new WSU Interdisciplinary Conference on Social Justice (WSU SJCON) from 3-6 p.m. Friday in the Neill Public Library. 

The event begins with a screening of the first part of “College Behind Bars” which is a four-part film. This will be followed by a keynote address and a Q& A hosted by Anna Plemons, WSU English professor.  

“I think that mass incarceration is a huge social issue right now in the United States, but it’s not something that most people have a lot of access to,” Plemons said.

People of all demographics, disciplines, interests and perspectives can attend. This will lead to a meaningful dialogue on incarceration, she said. 

“Our hope with this Friday event is to bring folks from both the Pullman community and the WSU community together around these conversations to get different perspectives,” said Kathryn Manis, the organizer of the event and chairman of WSU SJCON. 

Plemons said one of the main perspectives the event hopes to show is what incarcerated life is like. 

“I think prison is a difficult thing for most people to understand in ways that move beyond the tropes of the things we see on TV,” she said, “like how prison works or what incarcerated people are like.”

The event is the first of many for WSU SJCON which will involve multiple panels throughout Saturday. This year’s theme is “Doing Social Justice: Reclaiming Space and Place.”

WSU SJCON begins at 9 a.m. Saturday at the Chinook. More information can be found on the WSU SJCON website.