Thursday, August 8, 2013

knitting in prison

No, not me. The explanation for my recent absence is a bit more mundane and involves the 4-H fair and a horrendous GI bug, both of which are finished, thank goodness.

Prisoners knitting in one of their classrooms, Sing Sing
From the Library of Congress website:
Prisoners knitting in Sing Sing, 1915

Instead, compliments of Filamenti, a fascinating article about a program for male inmates in a Brazilian prison. They have been taught to knit high fashion designs. In exchange, they receive a bit of extra money and one day off their time for every three days spent knitting.

Besides a reduction in their sentences, what else must they receive from this arrangement? The joy of creation, the soothing repetition of the needles, the satisfaction of work, the comfort of camraderie... The things all crafters receive from their tasks, despite the vastly different circumstances. The program has to make an enormous difference to the quality of their day-to-day lives. Can it possibly make a difference to them on a long-term basis?

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