Prison Renaissance
 

Welcome!

The Renaissance of the 1400s brought the rebirth of reason in Europe, and the 1920s saw the rebirth of African-American art & literature in the Harlem Renaissance and its echoes.

Prison Renaissance began with a group of incarcerated artists who experienced a rebirth of their human values. Artistic expression changed the way they see themselves. Art and education will allow them to help change how other incarcerated people see themselves — as citizens and community builders instead of outsiders and burdens.

We hope that a return to civic duty among incarcerated-Americans will change how the public views its incarcerated population — the largest in the world.

Prison Renaissance publishes an online literary journal of work by incarcerated authors in addition to regular posts on our website. If you'd like to read our literary journal for 2017 click here

Images courtesy of Peter Mertz for Artistic Ensemble
 

Updates

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'Redemption is not just for me' - Op-Ed by Emile DeWeaver

In an op-ed published in the San Francisco Chronicle, co-founder Emile DeWeaver reflects on the meaning of his recent commutation for other incarcerated people and the power of restorative justice.

“People who said they “didn’t care” are admitting to themselves that they both want to care and can be restorative members of their communities. They’re energized to transform their lives; and their transformations can change the lives around them, just as my transformation ripples through the world around me.”

Read the full text here:

http://www.sfchronicle.com/opinion/openforum/article/Redemption-is-not-just-for-me-12541545.php

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Prison Renaissance Co-Founder Emile DeWeaver's Sentence Commuted!

We are beyond excited to share the news that Prison Renaissance co-founder Emile DeWeaver’s sentence was commuted by Governor Jerry Brown on December 23. Emile’s tireless commitment to the rehabilitative power of art and writing has already inspired many, and this major decision will allow him to continue the work of building bridges over walls with allies and incarcerated communities far and wide, old and new.

We would like to thank everyone who wrote letters of support or who has followed Emile’s journey. Please check back soon to learn more about how you can continue to support Prison Renaissance and assist Emile as he transitions into a community leader on the outside. We are overjoyed at the prospect of this new phase in Emile’s life, and it is with overwhelming gratitude, joy, and hope that everyone at Prison Renaissance looks forward to 2018 and the work that lies ahead.

Read the press release here:

https://www.gov.ca.gov/news.php?id=20117