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Time, art and resistance: visual art programs in prisons Knight, Graeme 1997

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TIME, ART AND RESISTANCE: VISUAL ART PROGRAMS IN PRISONS by Graeme Knight B.F.A., Queen's University, 1981 B.Ed., Queen's University, 1985 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS in THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES (Department of Curriculum Studies) We accept this thesis as conforming to the required standard The University of British Columbia March 1997 © Graeme Knight, 1997 In presenting this thesis in partial fulfilment of the requirements for an advanced degree at the University of British Columbia, I agree that the Library shall make it freely available for reference and study. I further agree that permission for extensive copying of this thesis for scholarly purposes may be granted by the head of my department or by his or her representatives. It is understood that copying or publication of this thesis for financial gain shall not be allowed without my written permission. Department The University of British Columbia Vancouver, Canada DE-6 (2/88) ABSTRACT The following study evolved out of a pilot study which I conducted in the summer of 1995 at a correctional facility in eastern Ontario. The testimony of two volunteer inmates there led me to the present enquiry: How do inmates experience time, what are their perceptions of it, and to what extent art making has any impact on those perceptions? Using the temporal theories of two sociologists, Edward Hall (1983) and Victor Gioscia (1971), which I illustrated through relevant literary works concerning inmates of long-term institutions, I sought evidence of alternative temporal constructs in the behavior and testimonies of the volunteer inmates. The twelve week case study involved setting up a course of art similar to the one offered in 1995. This one took place in a medium security correctional facility for men in the lower mainland of British Columbia, during the summer of 1996. Unlike the pilot study, which operated during regular school time, the latter study was held during inmates' leisure time, two evenings a week, for three hours each evening. The following ethnographic methods of data collection were used: pre-program questionnaires, field notes, interviews, and document analysis. Thirteen men originally participated in the art course, of whom, six agreed to be interviewed. Because the art course was canceled mid-way through my research, I reconsidered my study, my double role as researcher-teacher, and the data that I had so far collected, to ponder the dynamics of research and volunteer programs within the prison bureaucracy. Evidence of Hall's temporal notions was scant; however, some of the inmates interviewed indicated negative effects of long-term incarceration that corresponded to Gioscia's definitions; these men also demonstrated resistance mechanisms through the practice and mentoring of art and hobbies. As well, prison staff, particularly administrators, are implicated in the failure of volunteer/adult education program delivery. Closing reflections support participatory strategies in qualitative research in the light of postmodern research theory and end with practical and theoretical recommendations. ii T A B L E OF CONTENTS A B S T R A C T i i T A B L E OF CONTENTS i i i LIST OF FIGURES v i i A C K N O W L E D G M E N T S v i i i C H A P T E R ONE: A PROPOSAL FOR STUDYING ART IN PRISONS 1 P R E F A C E : 1 I N T R O D U C T I O N .1 H O W I C A M E T O S T U D Y T H I S G R O U P O F L E A R N E R S 2 B E N E F I T S O F A R T S P R O G R A M S I N P R I S O N S 4 P R I S O N S , P R I S O N E R S A N D T I M E 9 C O N C E P T S O F T I M E - T E A C H E R S V E R S U S A D M I N I S T R A T O R S 11 C H A R A C T E R I S T I C S O F P R I S O N E R S 1 2 A P P R O A C H I N G A R E S E A R C H Q U E S T I O N 1 3 S I G N I F I C A N C E O F T H I S S T U D Y F O R A R T E D U C A T I O N 1 4 C H A P T E R TWO: A LITERARY COMPARISON OF PRISONER SURVIVAL AND SOCIOLOGICAL THEORIES OF TIME 16 T W O L I T E R A R Y E X A M P L E S O F P O L Y C H R O N I C T E M P O R A L O R I E N T A T I O N S : 1 8 T H E G E O G R A P H Y O F T I M E 2 1 S Y N C H R O N Y A N D I T S V A R I A N T S 2 2 T H E B O D Y A S A S I T E O F R E S I S T A N C E 2 6 C H A P T E R T H R E E : M E T H O D O L O G Y 3 2 M E T H O D O L O G I C A L O R I E N T A T I O N 3 2 T H E P I L O T S T U D Y , : 3 5 iii THE STUDY 36 SITE SELECTION 37 STUDY POPULATION 38 TIMELINE 38 DATA COLLECTION PROCEDURES 39 DATA ANALYSIS 42 BIAS AND SlIBJECTTVITY 44 NAMES AND LANGUAGE 46 WHOSE VOICE? 47 RECIPROCITY • 49 VALIDITY 51 C H A P T E R 4: DISCUSSION OF DATA C O L L E C T I O N : EIGHT T H E M E S 5 3 RESEARCHER/TEACHER DILEMMAS 54 Instructional/Curriculum Dilemmas 54 Enrollment and Attendance 63 Material and Logistical Problems 64 Conflicting Roles: Researcher versus Teacher 67 SECURITY AND SPACE • 70 Volunteer Access 70 Materials and Supplies 75 Information and Surveillance • 76 Space • 78 STAFF RESISTANCE 8 0 Access and Orientation 8 ' Renegotiated Space 82 Security Clearances 83 Program Scheduling and Enrollment 84 INMATE RESISTANCE • 8 9 iv Inmate Indifference 89 Education and Experience 92 Paranoia 95 Perceived Slights 97 CONFRONTATIONS 98 Personal Barbs : 99 Curriculum Differences ' 104 CO-OPERATION AND SUCCESSFUL ARTS PROGRAMS 106 Co-operation with Inmates 107 Positive Art Experiences 109 Staff Co-operation 110 Other Successful Arts Programs , 112 PRISON STRUCTURE r 114 Prison Programs 115 Prison Routine 117 Inmates' Routine 118 Prisoners' Concepts and Experiences of Time 120 Effects of Prisonization 123 INMATES' WORLD 124 Knowledge and Mentoring 125 Inmate Imagery and Values 128 Inmate Ethos 133 CHAPTER FIVE: REFLECTIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 136 TIME AND PRISONIZATION: PRISON AS HAVEN OR HELL 136 ART AS PSYCHIC RESISTANCE 139 RESISTANCE TO ART COURSES • 139 RECOMMENDATIONS FOR TEACHING AS A VOLUNTEER ACrTVTTY : . . 141 MENTORING 142 V T H E J O Y O F P A R T I C I P A T I O N : 1 4 4 T H E P R O B L E M O F C R I T I C I S M 1 4 5 W O R K I N G W I T H A D M I N I S T R A T O R S 1 4 6 A C R I T I Q U E O F T H E P R A X I S O F R E S E A R C H 1 4 8 S U G G E S T I O N S F O R T H E O R Y 1 4 9 A N D F I N A L L Y , A G A L A O P E N I N G A N D A D R E A M 1 5 0 R E F E R E N C E S 152 APPENDIX I 156 APPENDIX II 157 APPENDIX III 159 APPENDIX IV 160 APPENDIX V ....161 APPENDIX VI I 6 2 vi LIST OF FIGURES FIGURE 1: GIOSCIA'S DIAGRAM OF TEMPORAL STATES 23 FIGURE 2: ABE'S LINOLEUM PRINT 132 vii ACKNOWLEDGMENTS I would like to thank my advisor, Dr. Rita Irwin for her support from the very beginning. It was she who answered my call to the department of Curriculum Studies, suggesting I would be "an ideal candidate" for admission to the art education program at U.B.C., in the spring of 1994. Her encouragement and advice since then have pulled me through many of my darkest hours. Also, I was privileged to work with Dr. Stephen Duguid, the guiding force behind the Correctional Education program at Simon Fraser University, whose formidable experience with prisoner education he was so generous in sharing with me, outside his faculty and university. He supported my findings throughout my research and analysis as a true friend and mentor. Thanks also to Dr. Ron MacGregor, who agreed to join my committee the year before his retirement, on top of all his other commitments. Tactfully steering me towards greater clarity in my writing and thinking, his comments were always exact and welcome. Thanks go to my friends, family and the staff of U.B.C. Faculty of Education. Due to spacial constraints I can name only one here, Rosa Mastri: without her technical and emotional support, this thesis might not have been realized. The directors of Prison Arts Foundation, Gary Wyatt and Marian Otterstrom, arranged for my placement and provided me with art supplies and funds. As important, their comments validated many of my own subjective impressions while conducting the research. Lastly, I wish to thank the volunteer inmates at the host institution, who, unfortunately, must remain unnamed. This thesis is written for them. vm Chapter One: A Proposal For Studying Art in Prisons Only your freedom of movement has been taken away, (hobbycraft officer of a British Columbia prison, May 1996) Preface The two worlds appear, at first glance, worlds apart: The notion of prisons conjures a closed society where all freedom has been successfully managed and, where necessary, aggressively suppressed. Art/artists stand for freedom - of thought and expression, of voice, of mobility if need be, of the dispensing of one's civic duties only as one sees fit, without regard for the petty responsibilities of 'normal' society - that only an elite segment of society enjoys. As if inscribing, via F M broadcast, this divide, the C.B.C. on February 7, 1997 isolated two stories: The first, highlight of the 'arts report', announced a meeting in Ottawa of major chiefs of government and the corporate sector to discuss the future of the arts in Canada. Meanwhile, on the regular news cast, another riot broke out in a midwestern Canadian penitentiary: inmates were stabbed and rushed to hospital; reasons for the uprising included double bunking of prison cells. Introduction Many administrators and teaching staff laud prison art/s programs, citing such intrinsic attributes as inmate interest and the potential for therapeutic effects. As such these effects comprise part of the menu of rehabilitation training and education in the prison milieu. However, an equally vocal and powerful body of correctional staff regard arts in prisons as evidence of inmate coddling (Cleveland, 1989; Peaker & Vincent, 1991; Szekely, 1982). The judicious program coordinator must administer carefully between these two mutually antipathetic interests in order to operate a course of equitable access to educational programs and a mutually sustaining work/study environment. By proposing to study a group of inmates in a long-term correctional facility, I wished to understand issues 1 specific to prison art programs. The teaching of art in any situation brings its own constraints and problems; within the prison environment some of these problems are reduced - classroom discipline, for example - while others are exacerbated. It is with respect to the latter set of issues that my research is concerned. The amount of research conducted in the area of prison arts is relatively scant; what does exist is largely contained within the context of adult correctional education. Some issues which affect correctional education are: restriction of access to visual artifacts, artists and visual stimuli; security surrounding the appropriateness of material and processes; theft of materials; censorship/self-censorship of imagery; space restrictions (for studio work, storage and display); dealing with emotional consequences and therapeutic management of intense artistic engagement; program timetabling/duration within an open-ended school calendar; and other disruptions to class scheduling and size due to parole, court dates, transfers, visits and lockdowns. In researching art programs in prisons, I intended to concentrate on one aspect in particular, taking into account those aforementioned issues where they occured: the impact of visual art education on prisoner/students' perception of time, paying particular attention to inmates': a) Potential for improved ability to deal with time during their sentence; b) Change in their experiential conception of time; c) Ability to 'suspend' time, by engaging with visual art, 'leaving prison' for portions of the day, thereby mitigating some of the negative effects of prisonisation. Prisonisation refers to a complexity of counterproductive effects upon incarcerated people, including institutionalization, forced immersion in an authoritarian environment, and the long-term results of having too much time and too little to do (Duguid, 1996). How I Came to Study This Group of Learners Kingston, Ontario is famous for its correctional institutions. As little information as those high walls admit either way, their presence is unmistakable. From 1971 to 1981 I 2 lived almost literally within the shadow of Kingston Penitentiary (now a detention centre). Across the street from our house, a large cement fence post reminded us that the neighbourhood was built on former penitentiary farmland. The street around the corner was lined with homes of many penitentiary staff. The Correctional Staff College was located across from a park at the end of this street; across from the college, on the shore of Lake Ontario, and sandwiched improbably between an exclusive neighborhood known as Alwington Place to the east, and the Olympic Sailing Harbour to the west, was Kingston Pen itself. The summer we moved to Kingston (1971), fourteen men escaped from Bath (minimum security) Institution, exciting panic among all good citizens within a fifty mile radius until, one by one, the escapees were all rounded up. The idea of teaching art iri prison first occurred to me as a pre-B.F.A. student at Queen's University, when an instructor mentioned that was what he did during the summer when he was not teaching the open studio course. He was in his late 20s, had had a couple of significant exhibitions locally, and presented a role model for me. I was intrigued by the danger and the aura of mystery that prisons exuded. Here was someone who had been inside and appeared to enjoy the experience. Arranging a teaching practicum at a prison was an option in the Education program at Queen's, although our professor advised us that the experience of being locked up for an entire working day, exactly as the inmates were, was not to everybody's taste: one education student had to be evacuated within two hours, so great was his anxiety over his forced containment. When I returned to Kingston on a visit in the spring of 1994, the opportunity presented itself again: A permanent teaching position at a nearby correctional facility was advertised in a local newspaper. I applied, and although the position was filled, I accepted the offer of a summer supply position, working at various institutions in the Kingston area. At one of these institutions, which was to become my home base, two summer arts courses, visual art and music, were offered concurrently for five weeks. My impression of the visual art course was such that I thought I could do better, and shared this with the 3 institution's principal, who invited me to submit a syllabus. I was hired for the following summer's art course. I used the situation to construct a pilot study research project, looking at art in prisons. Out of that pilot study the present research proposal was born. Among my list of friends I can name no convicts or ex-cons. My empathy for prisoners stems from a general empathy for the powerless and dispossessed members of society. This empathy derives, in turn, from a Christian upbringing, and has been fostered recently by an interest in Buddhism, and neo-Marxist liberatory educators and philosophers such as Paolo Friere(1970). Professionally, my decision to become a teacher derived in part from experiences as a volunteer counsellor with inner city youth, many of whom had histories of minor offences. For five years I was a member of Amnesty International, among whose activities, writing letters on behalf of political prisoners is paramount. For two years I worked part-time as a counsellor in an addiction recovery home for men. Although this was not a 'halfway house', most of the residents had been ordered to spend time there as part of, or in lieu of, their probation or parole. Part of my job was enforcing curfew. Without engaging in the debate as to whether prisoners deserve the sentence they have been handed down, my basic response to the environment that these people must endure is one of deep revulsion. Any intervention must be an improvement into the lives of these human beings, for whom a complex assortment of restrictions - social/familial, sexual, intellectual, sensory, and geographic - comprises their lived reality. The sum effect of these privations on the individual has not yet been accurately assessed. Benefits of Arts Programs in Prisons While research on prison arts programs indicates real and measurable benefits, different parties involved in prisoner containment and education hold differing views regarding those benefits. Peaker and Vincent (1991) conducted an extensive survey on arts programs in prisons and young offender institutes in England and Wales between 1987 and 1989. They distinguished those benefits cited by: a) artists-in-residence and art therapists; 4 b) educational staff, including regular art teachers; c) administrative staff: governors, heads of inmate activities, parole and other uniformed officers, and chaplains; and d) prisoners. This section summarizes their findings. Observations of other researchers, teachers and art therapists are included where relevant. a) Artists and art therapists: Among the benefits to prisoners, those therapeutic in nature are most praised: the arts provide a sense of achievement, a humanizing environment, a sense of internal freedom within the confines of prison, and the opportunity to develop latent skills, thereby improving self-esteem. Artists and art therapists view their contact with prisoners as vehicles for increasing prisoners' self-knowledge, via significant emotional contact and opportunities to explore old problems in new ways. Joyce Laing (1982) considers the expression of the inner psyche as fundamental to real growth. The teaching of art with this emphasis provides prisoners with opportunities for significant rehabilitative gain. Piazza (1996; 1997) finds the work he does with young offenders fosters their awareness of their situation, among whose existential realities include the notion of living under surveillance. Art activities can also alleviate tension around stressful periods, such as waiting for parole. End products are valued only insofar as they give inmates tangible proof of an acquired skill and success. Art therapists caution against fostering conformity through the pursuit of unchallenging crafts, such as casting from molds, or already attained skills (Carrel & Laing, 1982; Peaker & Vincent, 1991; Uren, 1979). Social benefits are provided through the sharing of equipment, supplies and ideas, working together on projects, and forging links with the outside world. In this sense, artists-in-residence assume the role of ambassador for inmates. The acquisition of an enjoyable skill which prisoners can retain upon release, provides a recreational and vocational benefit (Cleveland, 1989; Skelly, 1992; Szekely, 1982). b) Educational staff: The kinds of benefits cited by educational staff fall roughly into the categories mentioned above: therapeutic, social and recreational. Arts courses are believed 5 to encourage prisoners in resisting their imprisonment from an intrapersonal level, countering a view common among prisoners that prison life is somehow a suspension of their real lives (Szekely, 1982). Prisoners can make decisions, be open to stimuli, take responsibility, make decisions and thereby gain some control over their immediate environments. In young offender reformatories, arts activities are emphasized for the positive occupation and social skills they provide. A tutor at a women's open prison (Peaker & Vincent, 1991:82), used role play and encouraged skills like dressmaking and soft sculpture. Encouraging the participants to take the broadest view of what constitutes art, she elicited the natural creativity of everyone in her class. The inmates took pride in their work and appreciated the opportunity to communicate on a deeper level than in regular classes. Prison staff do not unanimously endorse indications of inmate freedom: many take the view that prisons are intended only for punishment: to them, arts courses are further evidence of inmate coddling. Meticulous observation of prison policies and regulations, building personal relationships with uniformed staff and keeping them informed of program goals and progress can help the intrepid arts instructor convince prison staff of the value of arts courses (Cleveland, 1989; Peaker & Vincent, 1991; Szekely, 1982). From Peaker & Vincent's survey (1991), commercial benefits encompassed a twofold purpose: the production of goods for a): personal sale and exchange, and b): charities. The latter purpose was considered more valuable. Traditional educational benefits applied to arts activities included broadening intellectual boundaries, acquiring alternative learning strategies and skills, and developing creativity and imagination. In general, educational staff evaluated the success of arts activities on a personal effect basis; that is, how well they countered the negative effects of prison life. In this respect, arts were seen as tools by which prisoners could construct positive channels for their energy and emotions. The adult education model - free choice, experimentation and personal responsibility - was emphasized, to counter memories of negative school experiences. 6 c) Administrative staff: Administrators regard therapeutic benefits as most important. Arts activities are considered a help in relieving frustrations, developing self-understanding, self-esteem and skills: painting, for example, enables the constructive expression of aggression. Participation in the arts are believed to humanize 'hardened' characters, and offer a means of escape from the more punitive aspects of prison life. One governor (Peaker & Vincent, 1991:140) cautioned against the potential for therapists and psychologists to misdiagnose, or 'trap' prisoners (identifying personality traits, thereby influencing decisions regarding a prisoner's length and/or condition of sentence). Administrators considered any educational benefits of arts programs as part of the general effects of education. Staff noted the potential of arts subjects as a means of enticing inmates toward more academic subjects, with which many inmates have had unsuccessful experiences. From this perspective, arts subjects were considered secondary (and therefore expendable) to the more pressing need for adult basic education. Another advantage of arts in prisons, social benefits were understood as those which improved relationships, the environment, and the smooth operation of prison life. Particularly in young offender institutes, social control was considered a priority. Staff and inmates alike welcomed the break in routine offered by arts activities, which constituted for them a recreational benefit. Commercial benefits were understood as those that suggested marketable skills, although cash transactions within the prison were discouraged. The governor of a women's prison saw a superior legitimacy in creative art work over crafts, but mentioned the difficulty of encouraging inmates toward these less certain, riskier and messier activities. All but one governor stressed the security and control advantages of traditional crafts and busy-work. This attitude informs many prison decisions, where concerns for security and authoritarian control take precedence over program accessibility (Cleveland, 1989; Goldin & Thomas, 1984; Nicolai, 1981; Szekely, 1982). 7 d) Prisoners: Peaker and Vincent's (1991) survey did not include annotated responses from prisoners. The following benefits are inferred from discussions between the researchers and prisoners, observations of, and recorded comments by, prisoners. Other researchers' observations are noted as well. Prisoners need to be able to mark the passage of time, to keep records of the progress of their sentence. They are constantly addressed and managed as groups; in contrast, the intimate scale of the art class allows them to be treated on a personal level. Individual instruction fosters a prisoner's sense of uniqueness, building trust and openness, which in turn may lead to prisoners' greater risk-taking (Carrel & Laing, 1982; Congdon, 1984; Szekely, 1982). Enrollment in school and especially evening programs may help to break up a prisoner's day, thereby augmenting the sense of the passing of time. Bored prisoners with little or no previous art or musical experience will often take up individual activities, especially those that can be easily transported from cell to cell, or from one facility to another. Arts classes can also offer a safe and informal common ground where prisoners can communicate with one another with less fear of surveillance. Drawing, writing, small model and soft toy making, and playing a small instrument are especially popular. Creating a tangible artifact confirms one's existence in an environment that some have described as a state of limbo. For example, in a women's county jail in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, Congdon (1984) found that inmates were compelled to take art for the opportunity it provided them to make something to give to a loved one on the outside. Some prisoners will establish contact with family through extensive writing or drawing, intending to pass on or show their collections to relatives. While the prospect of continuing one's success with post-release sales of artwork can be a worthy incentive, prisoners may harbour unrealistic expectations of lucrative careers in art. In this respect professional artists may provide essential career counseling. Prisoners' frustration with the lack of contact with other artists, including writers and musicians, may be alleviated as well. 8 Restrictions on materials pose a formidable and ongoing constraint. One prisoner described his method of inspiration in terms of a bricoleur. "Well you haven't got much to work from in here. You have to use bits of this and bits of that and put them together" (Peaker & Vincent, 1991:60). The lack of art books and other visual resources in libraries poses a further obstruction to prisoners and visiting artists and teachers alike. Policies concerning the clearance of materials can seem inconsistent and unfair to the novice outside artist, unfamiliar with the complexities of prison security. One positive outcome is the shared frustration by teacher and inmate students; thus teachers are welcomed more closely into the inmate ranks, and in their view, further distanced from the 'other'; that is, uniformed staff. Where arts activities have been provided, prisoners have championed them. One prisoner appreciated the general therapeutic benefits of the arts. Another remarked how his involvement in sculpture helped him expend physical energy in a constructive and creative way. A group of prisoners involved in a multicultural arts week of music and dance described the event as "fun, pleasure, information, release of tension, an escape from day to day life in prison" (Peaker & Vincent, 1991:66). From the foregoing accounts, it is clear that prisoners do not categorize the benefits of art programs into discreet parameters. These categories, while providing useful distinctions to researchers, become less clearly defined, and overlap more readily, within the prisoners' purview. Rather, if they distinguish the various benefits of arts activities at all, they concentrate on the diversionary and possibly gainful outcomes, in the form of tangible items for barter and exchange. Prisons. Prisoners and Time One of the problems that both prisoners and staff, particularly teaching staff, must deal with in prisons is that of time. The typical prisoner's experience of time is qualitatively different from that of the teacher. Teachers and prisoners are, however, constrained by a hierarchical system that is based on an understanding of time that undermines both. The 9 severe regimentation of prisoners' routine, imposed by a seemingly indifferent and anonymous administration, automatically forestalls any extended discussions or studio work beyond the allotment of hours parceled out to a class (Goldin & Thomas, 1984; Otterstrom & Wyatt, 1996). To the novice teacher of art/s, the routine is rendered more unpredictable by the loss of inmate-students due to parole hearings or transfers, or closures of schools due to lockdowns and other security measures. Prisoners generally view time spent in prison as something they are forced to endure, in some way separate from the "real" time of their lives on the outside (Szekely, 1982). An exception is the institutionalized prisoner, who may experience more status and meaning within prison than in the outside world. This is the 'professional' prisoner, for whom prison has replaced the free world as home. For inmates, school and work routines break up an otherwise monotonous day. Several prison instructors note that inmate students tend to escape 'into' the class, in contrast to regular students who escape out of it (mentally), so much do prisoners appreciate the opportunity to learn (Duguid, 1996; McEwen & Martinez, 1981). Locked in their cell at any time between 1600 and 2100 hours, prisoners experience these unstructured hours as tedious. Anything that helps collapse this time is welcomed. At the other extreme, a highly regimented structure, wherein prisoners are constantly shuffled from place to place, forced to wait in line and submit to depersonalizing counts and searches, can have deleterious effects on their self-esteem. Lack of personal control over the environment can induce a passive or depressive state with some inmates; others may experience mounting frustrations. Violent outbursts often result as the only available stress releaser (McEwen & Martinez, 1981; Szekely, 1982). Arts teachers and therapists may also experience frustration with the administration's seemingly high-handed and hierarchical management of prison routines (Carrel & Laing, 1982; Williams, 1983). Teachers' syllabi need to be flexible enough to accommodate the capricious logic of the prison system. 10 Concepts of Time - Teachers versus Administrators While prisoners' daily lives are aggravated by having too much free time on their hands, the typical teacher does not have enough time in a day to implement her or his course. Planning, preparation, meetings, extracurricular activities and personal time all vie for attention, beyond scheduled classroom time, in the daily routine of almost any teacher. Administrators' increasing demands on teachers' limited temporal resources are receiving consideration as one cause of an alarming rise in teacher 'burnout' (Hargreaves, 1990). Prison administrators fare no better in this respect; if anything, the relative isolation and autonomy of the prison system only exacerbates this basic differential experience and management of time, by teachers and administrators. Hall's (1983) identification of two opposing views of time: monochrome and polychrome, helps to explain this lack of agreement in temporal understanding. According to Hall, Monochronic time pervades Western civilization; it is embedded in the policies and organization of governmental and other bureaucracies. In this view, time is an objective, rational resource to be carved up and distributed managerially. It is fixed, linear, and external to humanity or anything else (see also Hargreaves, 1990; Priestly, 1968). People who operate from this paradigm delegate responsibility with little regard for spontaneity, change, or subjective, contextual peculiarities. Of greater importance to them is the completion of a task within the allotted time: qualitative criteria are obliged to give way to a measurable appearance of success. A predominantly male social construct (Hargreaves, 1990), time's objective aspect can be traced to ancient Greece and earlier: Greek civilization distinguished chronos, measurable time, from cairos, subjectively experienced time (MacGregor, in conversation, 1996). The Enlightenment, with its infatuation with mechanistic inventions, promoted time's carving up into increasingly smaller units through the perfection of chronometers. Sir Isaac Newton formulated these arbitrary divisions into a grand, infallible, mechanistic theory of the universe. Despite the discoveries of later physicists, particularly Einstein with his theory of relativity, this limited and linear 11 understanding of time continues to predominate in the popular imagination (Priestly, 1968). Prison structure and administration, based on the operational schema of military life, which in turn evolved from medieval monastic orders (Foucault, 1979), incorporated the monochronic understanding of time. Polychrome time, on the other hand, supports the simultaneous occurrence of a multiplicity of tasks and events. Its proponents' experience of time is subjective, phenomenological and situation-based. Relationships, quality, character and context take precedence over strict adherence to schedules and the quantifiable appearance of change. Quantitatively, time can seem to stretch endlessly (as with prisoners awaiting release) or fly past (as with a condemned man awaiting his last hours before the gas chamber). These two very different mindsets (teachers and administrators) are forced to co-exist and cooperate in large institutions. Much of the frustrations that teachers experience, to the bafflement of administrators, arises from these fundamentally opposing world views (Hargreaves, 1990). Characteristics of Prisoners Bearing in mind the danger and arbitrariness of generalizing any social group, certain identifying characteristics can help in understanding how prisoners relate to time. In North America, the majority of prisoners are between sixteen and thirty-five years of age (Williams, 1981). Predominantly from the poorest socio-economic classes, few prisoners will have completed high school (Speckman, 1981). In the United States, African-Americans comprise the largest single ethnic group, an indication, more accurately, of the racist underpinnings of American justice, as well as the constrained economic conditions of this visible miniority, rather than a predisposition to crime as such. In Canada, West Indian, Aboriginal, Middle Eastern, and Asian minorities similarly constitute larger proportions of the ethnic distribution inside prisons than outside. Limited educational and skills resources, marginal literacy levels and scant employment history in regular 12 occupations, handicap the majority of prisoners' opportunities for gainful employment in mainstream society (Nicolai, 1981). Two issues vital to the discussion of time in prisons invite scrutiny. First is a shared cultural attitude to time to which many prisoners' backgrounds predispose them: having grown up outside of the bourgeois, monochronic, time-as-money paradigm, they are, so to speak, polychronically-oriented.Also of note in this regard, and supporting Hall's (1983) thesis, is the relative predominance of non-white cultures that comprise the majority of prisoners in North America. Might a significant component of their conflict with society, with its culturally-approved conventions of clock-time (Gorman & Wessman, 1976; Hall, 1983; Hargreaves, 1990; Priestly, 1968), be grounded in this fundamentally different temporal understanding? The second issue concerns the excess of discretionary time that many prisoners have had, previous to their incarceration. A function of their reduced employment opportunities or motivation (many have chosen to engage with mainstream economy in only the most opportunistic and illegal ways), prisoners' former leisure times have often occasioned destructive, rather than constructive, activities (Garibaldi & Moore, 1981). Several recreational instructors and researchers have found prisoners will exhibit very limited leisure time resources and imagination. These researchers believe that constructive use of leisure time is paramount to prisoners' rehabilitation and re-integration into society (Garibaldi & Moore, 1981; McCall, 1981; Nicolai, 1981; McEwen & Martinez, 1981; Speckman, 1981; Williams, 1981). Leisure time management is of particular importance as the prospect of worthwhile, steady employment is further limited by a criminal record. Approaching a Research Question The aforementioned issues, briefly glossed over, indicate a need for research in the area of prisoners' experiential understanding of time. There are two dimensions to my enquiry. The first comprises an exploration into prisoners' values and attitudes 13 surrounding their sentence: How do inmates make sense of their world, and how does their perception of time in particular influence their learning? These values and attitudes constitute the matrix of the prisoners' time-related constructs. This question involves two sub-components: long-term and day-to-day. Each can be treated as discrete but related categories; for example, how do prisoners define their long-term sentences? What emotions and attitudes do they bring to them? Do these attitudes change over time; for example, as prisoners approach the end of their sentence? From my experience working with prisoners, I suspect they will demonstrate a polychronic understanding of time; further, I think that this orientation, insofar as it conflicts with the monochronic structure of prison routine, represents an ongoing source of prisoners' malaise. The second dimension of my enquiry is: do these individuals' perceptions of time change as a result of an immersion in art, and if so, how? Might the practice of art in prison enhance their sense of time, not only its quantity, but the quality of time as well? I expect to find evidence of identifiable and positive results from this immersion, with respect to prisoners' experience and understanding of time. Significance of this Study for Art Education The relative dearth of literature devoted to researching issues surrounding prison education, and art education in particular, points to a gap in the spectrum of education. Without additional research, this stratum of society will continue to be marginalized. Prisoners, by their forced containment and shared experiences, comprise a unique culture in society. Yet to the general population, this culture remains out of sight. Part of the mandate of the criminal justice system is, apparently, to keep prisoners invisible and silent. In the context of postmodern educational theory and praxis, this approach is misguided, anachronistic and inappropriate: it harms the majority of offenders for whom it was established: This suppression of individual voices constitutes a punishment which exceeds the crime. 14 The current trend in prison reform is one of humane containment, as opposed to the former term of rehabilitation. What this means, in lay terms, amounts to an admission of failure, on the part of prison administrators, to rehabilitate prisoners. What is now hoped for, more realistically, is that prisoners end their sentences no worse off than when they began. This is a frank admission of the harm that these institutions perpetuate. This proposed intervention of art immersion is supported by a considerable record of improvement in the lives of the incarcerated. What is astonishing is the continued struggle in which these 'frills' must engage. Evidence of positive behavioral change, improved self-esteem and important networking with committed outsiders can be wiped away with the malevolent sweep of an indifferent administrator's pen: another casualty of the overriding concern for fiscal restraint. While prison populations expand, pressuring already limited facilities, their operations budgets continue to shrink. If the arts have anything to offer for the care of the soul, or repair of damaged psyches — and I believe that they do — then the need for these kinds of strategies is greater now than ever before. Any research into this cloistered world opens a window in its walls. From this window, prisoners can, with effort and the collaboration of concerned outsiders, make their voices heard. This is a right that all people possess, regardless of their crime or their debt to society.. 15 Chapter Two: A Literary Comparison of Prisoner Survival and Sociological Theories of Time "I... was sixteen years old when I learnt that the hour was divided into minutes. In my village, when the peasants had to travel to town, they would go to the railway station at sunrise and lie down to sleep in the waiting room until the train came, which usually was about midday; sometimes it only came in the evening or next morning. These are the peasants who now work in our factories.... In all other countries, the peasants had one or two hundred years to develop the habit of industrial precision and of the handling of machines. Here they only had ten years.... You [comrade Rubashov] were given a watch as a child...." (Koestler, 1941, pp. 224-225) This chapter concentrates on two theories of time that I have selected for their relevance to the particular milieu of long-term incarceration and its psychological effects on prisoners. Other social researchers and historians who have lent credibility to these authors' works are cited where their findings bear mentioning. The temporal theories that I paraphrase here find their corresponding exemplars in two literary works, Thomas Mann's The Magic Mountain (1969) and Brothers and Keepers, by John Wideman (1984). Working in the 1960s and 1970s, two sociologists have delineated similar conceptions of cultural orientations to time. Edward Hall (1983), working from empirically gathered data from the 1950s and 1960s, found that cultures approach time in either of two fundamentally different ways. He identifies these opposing temporal attitudes as monochronic and polychronic orientations. Monochrony defines the operative temporal system of world trade, commerce and administration, a quantitative model that parcels out regular, predictable units of time from an otherwise undifferentiated day. Within this view, time becomes a commodity, linked with money in a profane industro-commercial union of efficiency, energy and speed. Progress is bound up with time, and linked to productivity (the efficient use of time). Since the industrial revolution, workers' behavior has been tailored increasingly to fit this technological paradigm. Natural rhythms of work, rest and play, and calendar feast days that honored the cycles of nature in 16 agrarian, pre-industrial Europe, have all but disappeared. In their place, tight schedules, hourly wages interrupted by crisp, regular breaks, have been implemented to maximize the productive potential of a working day. From factories to hospitals, prisons, schools and government offices, this model has served Western civilization without serious disturbance until the counter-culture revolution of the 1960s. Leading philosophers such as Aldous Huxley (1954) and Timothy Leary (1968) disseminated accounts of alternate experiences of time via Eastern mystical disciplines or (for those impatient of the time required) psychoactive drugs such as L.S.D.. A generation disenchanted with their parents' chronometric work ethic began to 'tune in, turn on and drop out' in significant numbers. The revolution did not last. Today proponents of the work ethic cast disparaging glances on those who consciously buck its mainstream values. Nonetheless, important as this orientation is to Northern European and North American cultures, with their short growing season and, consequently, its urgent demand for planning and preparation, monochronism is a learned trait, as Piaget (1976), has demonstrated. By comparison, communist civilizations such as the former U.S.S.R. and mainland China entered the industrial revolution much later, between 120 and 170 years after Europe, with only 20 to 50 years to catch up with the rest of the developed world. Evidence suggests that China is still making adjustments: an acquaintance, recently traveling there, when he asked whether a train was leaving for Shanghai at 2:00 p.m., was told, "Perhaps." What rural Chinese culture shares with developing nations, as well as agrarian societies, Mediterranean, Aboriginal, and Hispanic-American cultures, is, according to Hall, a polychronic orientation to time. These societies tend to experience time in a more varied and less structured way than their monochronic counterparts. At work, several tasks might be managed at any time, each at a different speed and stage of completion. Time has multiple layers, rather than a linear, numeric aspect. This qualitative 17 understanding allows for metaphoric descriptions of time: 'Hard time' (a common prison expression), 'good times/bad times,' 'an easy time,' 'big time' and so on (Gioscia, 1971). Problems occur when the two temporal systems must operate in tandem. As time and money become increasingly intertwined, highly numerate administrators, adept at balancing budgets and timesheets, are increasingly placed in positions of authority and power. Workers lacking a monochronic aptitude become the 'managees', disposable and disempowered. Two Literary Examples of Polychronic Temporal Orientations The authors Thomas Mann and John Wideman, in their respective books The Magic Mountain (Mann, 1969) and. Brothers and Keepers (Wideman, 1984), portray two individuals with very different backgrounds: one white, German upper-middle class, the other black, American lower class, who nonetheless share a common orientation to time. The facilities described in these works, the one patho-physiological, the other correctional, share characteristic effects of long-term institutional residency. Mann's fictional protagonist Hans Castorp finds his innate sense of time's cyclic nature supported in the rarefied world of a Swiss tuberculosis sanatorium, in the early part of the twentieth century. The two 'incarcerated' men in Mann's opus, Hans Castorp and his cousin Joachim, demonstrate opposing attitudes to time, and hence different tolerances of their residency in the sanatorium. Wideman presents a personal voyage of self-discovery as he re-integrates his brother's criminal status with his own as a successful author and professor. Wideman's distant association with his brother Robby, a drug addict forced to steal to support his habit, is dramatically telescoped when the younger brother arrives bleeding at the professor's door after a bungled sale of stolen televisions. This catalyzing moment compels the author to trace the paths of each brother that led them to such different lifestyles. In his search Wideman discovers the roots of his identity: his shame and his pride. He fleshes out a portrait of Robby that is loving and full of admiration: 18 You were a pinprick of light, a spark whose radiance momentarily upheld the design, stabilized the ever expanding V that opens up to infinity. At some inconceivable distance the light bends, curves back on itself like a ram's horn or conch's shell, spiraling toward its greatest compass but simultaneously narrowing to that needle's eye it must enter in order to flow forth bounteously again. You hovered at that nexus, took your turn through that open door. (Wideman, 1984, p. 24) In tracing their ancestral links the way an astronomer might search for new constellations, Wideman's metaphysics hint at the beginning of creation, of time itself. One of society's conventions, objective, sequential time, had to be set aside if Wideman wished to understand his brother: "The usual notion of time, of one thing happening first and opening the way for another and another, becomes useless pretty quickly when I try to isolate the shape your life from the rest of us..." (Wideman, p. 19). One of the tenets of sequential time, progress, had no meaning to young Robby. For him, every day was like another, its main purpose to find the party, to enjoy the here and now. In their mother's words, "Every day God sends here Robby thinks is a party....he's thinking, Where's it at today?...Where's the fun?" (p. 20). In his carefree disregard for work, with its attendant schedules, appointments and remote payoffs, the young Robby resembles that other dreamy youth, the fictional Hans Castorp, who ... did not keep inward count of the time, as does the man who husbands it, notes its passing, divides and tells and labels its units....but he was arrested by its appeal to the senses. nature and temperament passive, [Hans Castorp] could sit without occupation hours on end, and loved, as we know, to see time spacious before him, and not have the sense of its passing banished, wiped out, or eaten up by prosaic activity. (Mann, 1969, pp. 226, 122) Hans' adjustment to sanatorium life is, not surprisingly, quite effortless. He discovers, after a bout of fever, that the passing days are merely "...the same day repeating itself..." (Mann, p. 183). This same discovery arouses in Robby Wideman a different reaction: "Outside your cell ain't nothing going on but the same old shit. That's what gets to you after awhile. 19 Repetition. Same ole same ole all the time" (Wideman, p. 230). Robby's background is markedly different from that of Hans Castorp. Both 'characters' reject the rules and rewards of life lived according to middle-class societal expectations. Hans, while not having chosen the sanctuary of the sanatorium, has no pressing desire to leave it; sanatorium life suits his temperament. Hans has been raised in a comfortable, bourgeois milieu. His rejection of the businessman's calling (at the beginning of the novel, he has just completed his degree as a marine engineer) incurs his uncle's uncomprehending wrath for wasting so much time at the 'House Berghof.' Neither did Robby Wideman choose life in prison. The Wideman roots are set in the underclass world of the African-American ghetto. John Wideman makes frequent references to the narrowness, the lack of opportunities, the near impossibility of escape from this predetermined existence. His mother railed against the biased legal forces that denied her son the basic rights of humanity. She came to understand "...that most of the ugliest things that happen to black people are not accidental but the predictable result of the working of the plan" (Wideman, p. 72). Wideman's blackness is a constant reminder, an inescapable source of embarrassment and anger in the face of white oppression: whenever he must submit to humiliating searches at airports (p. 186), or when prison staff harass him while visiting his brother (p. 192). His kid brother had long before decided that for him, the only way out of the ghetto was to 'melt the rock', to grasp whatever he could, materially, from its mean streets. Robby's attitude toward his birthright seems more accepting than that of John. He played by the rules of the street, and ultimately accepts its odds, prison or death: "If we had made it to the big time it just be a matter of time before somebody off us. Wheel's always turning. You can get to the top but ain't no way you gon stay at the top" (p. 131). Robby has no illusions about crossing those two invisible but inviolable lines, colour and class: "The money ain't nothing. You just use the money to make your play....You throw it away cause it's here today and gone tomorrow....People in the life ain't looking for no home and grass in the yard and shit like that. We the show people. The 20 glamour people.... See, it's rep. It's glamour. That's what it's about.... You make something out of nothing". (Wideman, p. 131) The Geography of Time Wideman's description of the approach to Western Penitentiary on the outskirts of Pittsburgh, with its setting removed from mainstream society, recalls the geographic remove of that august institution, the sanatorium in Mann's The Magic Mountain. They differ in one significant aspect, however: Mann's House Berghof (literally, 'High Mountain House')is set high aloft in the Swiss Alps, vertically suspended over the 'flat-land dwellers' with their worldly cares below. Here time is suspended: alternately compressed, expanded, or distorted. Might Mann have had in mind that Medieval conception of the vertical intersection of timelessness, via the advent of the Son of Man, into a Western, horizontal temporal alignment (Gioscia, 1971)? The possibility is suggested by his many ruminations, as omniscient narrator, over alternative conceptions and metaphors of time. He appears favorably disposed toward the Medieval view, "...that time is an illusion, and the real existence of things is an abiding present" (Mann, p. 547). Wideman's Western Penitentiary is all too earth-bound, removed though it is from normal daily concerns. Nonetheless, its inner life follows its own secular schedule: "At some point the rules change. Visitors must take leave of the certainties underpinning their everyday lives" (Wideman, p. 182). As at House Berghof, typical rules, implicit in normal society, are suspended: "Inside the walls, nothing can be taken for granted except the arbitrary exercise of absolute power" (p. 183). Earthly powers are thus inverted and recast. Unlike the staff at the sanatorium, who reside at the institution, prison staff must return to and from mainstream civilization every day. Wideman asks, "how could one world reside so placidly next to the other?" (p. 183). Robby Wideman, raised in a culture whose polychronic values are discounted by the dominant culture, failed at his only socially respectable employment, as a careworker for retarded and autistic children. His innate indifference to strict routines, for example, 21 arriving on time for regularly scheduled shifts, conflicted with the professionals' administration of the organization. Wideman sheds some understanding on the culture out of which Robby's polychronic aptitude was formed. He admits, "None of us knew how traditional West African families were organized or what values the circular shape of their villages embodied, but the living arrangements we had worked out among ourselves resembled the ancient African patterns" (p. 79). Each member was granted as much privacy as s/he needed, yet no one needed to feel alone. Mothering was shared between all older women, while family ties extended to a wide, all-embracing network. Opposed to the Wideman's polychronic, multivalent household, the white, middle class ideal of the nuclear family is unitary and finite, its generations discrete. Monochronist values flourish more readily in this milieu. Synchrony and Its Variants Paralleling Hall's construction of two temporal systems is Victor Gioscia's (1971) theory of vertical time intersecting Newtonian horizontal time. He derives his theory from Medieval eschatology, which posited the end of human history with the second coming of Christ. Within this view, 'upward' was the heavenly realm above time, i.e. beyond normal quotidian concerns. Below the conventional earth-bound time lay hell. Both realms were considered eternal: one reward, the other punishment, for one's thoughts and deeds on earth. Similarly, ancient Greeks placed their gods high on Mount Olympus, as, later, Law was considered to emanate from on high. In recent years, users of drugs refer to their altered state as a 'high'. The depressive, negative meanings associated with the 'below time' zone of the vertical axis are many: a bad experience makes one feel 'low'; one speaks of being 'in the depths of despair'; one is 'weighed down' by cares; the poor are referred to as 'downtrodden', forming the 'lower' or even 'underclass' of society. 22 Sensitivity to time in either the low or high condition places one in a position along a diagonal axis between these two intersecting vectors. Thus Gioscia's construction of metaphoric understanding/experience of time: Figure I: Gioscia's Diagram of Temporal States EPICHRONY (above time) HYPOCHRONY (insensitive to time) ANACHRONY SYNCHRONY METACHRONY (behind time) (ahead of time) HYPERCHRONY (overly sensitive to time) CATACHRONY (below time) © Victor Gioscia, 1971. According to this diagram, people who are overly-sensitive to time, 'hyperchronics', would experience a slowness, a dragging of time. Such is the typical experience of the prisoner, whose real punishment consists in the variable quantity of time added to or subtracted from his or her sentence. All too fleeting are those moments when one is truly happy: for example, 'quality time' spent with family and friends, on vacation, during sex or 'riffing' with other musicians, can be occasions which often seem to rush by, unaware as we are of time's passing. One experiences at these times a diminished 23 temporal sensitivity, or 'hypochrony'. These states are located at opposite ends of the diagonal vector. They are not fixed, but fluid, although environment may predispose one to either end of the scale. Synchrony describes the realm whose diameters are equivalent: one's personal rate of time is felt_to be in harmony with that of society. Conversely, achrony may assume any of four realms: anachrony, wherein one feels one's personal pace to be lagging behind societal expectations or rate as a whole; for example, when one's rate of attainment at work is experienced as falling behind the company's or boss's guidelines. A metachronic orientation, on the other hand, might be used to describe a precocious child or avant-garde painter. Workers confronted with technological advancement, without the knowledge required to operate it, would find themselves in a metachronic situation, and may well find their positions declared redundant due to their suddenly anachronistic skills. The company may experience a shortfall of metachronically prepared workers. This is a common scenario today, when rapid advancements in computer and electronic circuitry are displacing technicians, mechanics and front line office staff. As Gioscia reminds us, physically mature young men and women must wait until they attain the legal age before they may enjoy the full rights and freedoms of society. Gioscia and his colleagues' interpretation of delinquency literature leads them to view this disparity between biological (metachronic) and societal (anachronic) maturation as anachronistic, thus anxiety-inducing, for the adolescent. This understanding helps to explain the case of Robby Wideman, whose social and sexual maturity developed counter to society's expectations: "These aspirations of love and desire turned on me when I wasn't able to live up to this sweet-self morality, so I began to self-destruct, burning up in my sensitivity, losing direction, because nowhere could I find this world of truth and love and harmony." (Wideman, p. 58) Epichrony is the experience of being 'above' time, when one rises above a situation to take a broader, more distant and detached view of it. Philosophers, futurists and 24 visionary politicians will often assume this stance. During periods of epichrony society grants special privilege to those in power, such as declaration of martial law (Gioscia, p. 91); the War Measures Act initiated by the Trudeau government in 1970 may come to mind. In incarceral settings, which have developed and administer their own rules outside of normal society, void of democratic checks and limitations such as those provided by electoral processes, epichronic-style power is arrogated with similar caprice and oppression. Wideman makes several references to such occasions in his frequent dealings with prison guards (pp. 43, 51, 81, 83, 187-188, 192). To the catachronic individual, time weighs heavy. Life is felt to be unfair, and any hope of improving upon one's circumstances is delimited by few choices and fewer chances. Decisions are made by people 'up on high', but the road to that place is too arduous for the catachronic person to reach it. Depression, despair and even suicide may result (Gioscia, pp. 91-92). Wideman's referral to his ghetto upbringing fits the catachronic domain. His brother tells him: "You know the shit's coming down and it's falling on everybody in Homewood....I'm in here but it's still falling on me. It's falling on Daddy and Mommy and Dave and Gene and Tish and all the kids. Falls till it knocks you down." (Wideman, p. 152) Wideman's account of that other arena, prohibited to black Americans, assumes a quasi-mythical dimension: If you're born black in America you must quickly teach yourself to recognize the invisible barriers disciplining the space in which you may move....You ignore the visible landscape. It has nothing to do with you, it will never change, so you learn a kind of systematic skepticism, a stoicism,...I can't get to the mountain and the mountain ain't hardly coming to me no matter how long I sit and holler, so I mize well do what I got to do right here on level ground and leave the mountain to them folks think they own it. (Wideman, p. 221) Gioscia describes the catachronic state as a prison. Metaphorically or literally, its severely depressive effects are known to be relieved, temporarily, by narcotics, whose users describe their bliss as a 'high', an epichronic realm wherein time seems not to move at all (Cheek & Laucius, 1971). The catachronic's propensity for narcotics also sheds 25 understanding on the underworld of Robby Wideman and his friends, with their habitual escapes via heavy drug use. The Body as a Site of Resistance Given Robby Wideman's background, his drug habit and his subsequent incarceration, it is surprising to find no mention of his using any drugs while serving time. This is not to suggest that it did not happen: both author and subject would prefer, understandably, to present a more flattering portrait. But Wideman emphasizes, wisely, alternative forms of survival in prison. Ironically, one of the reasons Robby functioned well in prison may rest in his never having had to give up a regular, monochronic routine. The typical benchmarks of time's passing - the eight hour working day, the weekend, holidays, visits to relatives and other planned trips - were not part of his reality previous to his incarceration. Such mundane events help the monochronized citizen to cope with an otherwise undifferentiated landscape of time, a 'misty abyss', as some prisoners have described it (Cohen & Taylor, 1972, p. 95). Pondering the temporal landscape of his sentence, Robby assumed a kind of bifocal vision, not unlike that of the long-term prisoners in Cohen & Taylor's study. They focused partly on the distant horizon, their release date, and otherwise on the quotidian events that filled and passed their days, the moments 'at close range'. The landscape's middle ground was thus scrupulously avoided. Like Hans Castorp, Robby Wideman seemed at greater ease with his forced removal from a monochronic society than some of his cohorts (Wideman, p. 187-188). Never fully submitting to the caprices of prison routine, he maintained his wits and integrity. He put his energies into constructive uses: developing his mind and maintaining his youthful body. Resistance to the cruel disruptions of guards and administrators, who would arbitrarily cancel programs, change schedules and single out individual inmates who 26 caught their cruel fancy, required a kind of tightrope mindfulness: "Vigilance is the price of survival. ...To pretend you could control your own destiny was a joke" (Wideman, p. 84). Robby's situation bears comparison with the residents of the sanatorium in Mann's The Magic Mountain. Unlike monks and nuns, who are privy to a personal communion with their Lord, or hippies, who disdain all concepts of past or future, neither prisoners nor hospitalized patients have chosen their solitude, their removal from normal society. These two kinds of 'incarcerees' also share an important existential conidtion with respect to time: bargaining. For patients of the tuberculosis asylum, bargaining with their doctor and negotiating an earlier release date occupies a good deal of their energy (Roth, 1962, in Cohen & Taylor, 1972). This is the strategy which Hans' cousin, the good soldier Joachim, uses. In spite of his strenuous physical discipline, none of his efforts win him a single day's shortening of his 'sentence'. His frustration mounts to such a pitch that he ultimately acts on his own, defying his doctor and leaving the House Berghof. His choice proves fatal. Prisoners are generally told what length of time to expect to spend behind bars. For the long-term prisoner, this knowledge opens up a paradox: to contemplate the entirety of one's sentence becomes unbearable; one prisoner advised another to do his twenty-year sentence "...five years at a time" (Cohen & Taylor, 1972, p. 97). At the same time, the contemplation of one's future release sustains one through temporally undifferentiated days. To alleviate the interminable futurity of this release date, long-term prisoners will devote years of their sentence negotiating, plea bargaining, applying for parole, in order to reduce their sentences: As of this writing,the convicted child killer Clifford Olsen has been granted the right to apply for parole, under a controversial 'faint hope' clause of his sentence. Untenable is the idea that one's life in prison is being played out; one may be serving life, but not one's own. Time has been served them as punishment, but someone else's time: their own time has been abstracted by the courts and in its place, prison time is 27 served out like a monetary fine. Time becomes a controller, not a resource, to be served rather than used. This abstraction of time may be one reason for the qualitative metaphors prisoners use to describe it: enduring a difficult situation, or when days seem to stretch out endlessly, is known as doing 'hard time'. Bothering another inmate with one's own complaints or problems, a prisoner might be admonished to "Do your own time, not mine!" One inmate has said, "You try to eat time, rather than enjoy it." (Cohen & Taylor, 1972, p. 96). Contemplating his brother's fate, Wideman makes similar observations: A narrow sense of time as a material entity, as a commodity like money that can be spent, earned, lost, owed or stolen is at the bottom of the twisted logic of incarceration....By surrendering a certain portion of his allotment of time on earth the malefactor pays his debt to society....Prison time must be hard time, a metaphorical death, a sustained, twilight condition of death-in-life....Prison is an experience of death by inches, minutes, hours, days. (Wideman, p. 35) In his historical analysis of modern prisons, Discipline and Punish (1979), the socio-historian and philosopher Michel Foucault traces the codification and adoption of monastic habits of discipline by schools, armies, factories and prisons. Coeval with a strict application of techniques of mastery over the body, time became increasingly regulated, parsed and systematized. [The religious orders] had been masters of discipline: they were the specialists of time, the great technicians of rhythm and regular activities. But the disciplines altered these methods of temporal regulation from which they derived. They altered them by refining them. One began to count in quarter hours, in minutes, in seconds. This happened in the army, of course:... in the elementary schools, the division of time became increasingly minute;... The gradual extension of the wage earning class brought with it a more detailed partitioning of time. (Foucault, p. 150) Historically, military life was assigned exclusive domain over control of the body: The individual body becomes an element that may be placed, moved, articulated on others. Its bravery or strength are no longer the principal variables that define it; but the place it occupies, the interval it covers, the regularity, the good order according to which it operates its movements. (Foucault, p. 164) Outside this 'good order', the worthy soldier Joachim founders. No amount of military training can help him. He has internalized not only the discipline but the clocklike, mechano-temporal mode that motivates it (as though the two could be separated!). 28 A carry-over from military regimens, the functioning of prisons retains much of the military ideology, albeit submerged in its present operations. Still necessary are the logistics of maintaining control over a large corpus of men or women. Only the enemy has changed: those in positions of authority command obedience, but no respect, from their charges; in place of honour and fidelity, a grudging, simmering complaisance. Paradoxically, Robby Wideman's survival consisted in submitting a part of himself to the bizarre order of the prison. He remained intact through a constant vigilance: "Robby watched it all. Ups and downs. What was consistent was the watching, the consciousness, the vision in which he saw himself as counting, as being worth saving at any cost" (Wideman, p. 195). Wideman laments the sacrifice of his own abilities, considered suspect, in order to gain admittance into the collegiate ideal: '"Playground move' was synonymous with bad move. Not bad move, but something undisciplined, selfish, possibly immoral" (Wideman, p. 226). For Wideman, a natural propensity for basketball was gradually systematized, broken apart and reassembled, until the 'natural' element was all but deracinated. Wideman's experience recalls Foucault's medieval scholastics, who conflated morality and physical discipline. Central to their coda was the timetable with its principle of non-idleness: "It was forbidden to waste time, which was counted by God and paid for by men; the timetable was to eliminate the danger of wasting it - a moral offence and an economic dishonesty" (Foucault, p. 154). Robby managed an alternate tactic: for him, as for many prisoners, the body represented personal property. The guards and authorities might bend, coerce and restrain it but he was in command insofar as he could shape it; resistance to external pressure was thereby strengthened: "Staying in shape is more than recreation. It's a necessity for survival" (Wideman, p. 219). Cohen and Taylor critique this dependency on physical exercise as a viable method of countering the deteriorative effects of long-term prison life. One inmate remarked, "Some of the prisoners in question would rather put an inch on their biceps than take a year 29 off their sentence" (Cohen & Taylor, p. 95). This sort of physical gain for its own sake indicates a loss of focus; indeed, deterioration may well have already taken place. Progress in prison, represented by books read, courses and degrees earned, or inches of muscular girth achieved, must reach a leveling off, as Cohen and Taylor point out. Time, as measured against these milestones, may well appear to be slowing down. But their critique of physical therapy misses a larger, more complex motivation. Robby's regimen of one thousand push-ups, which he attained after only six months (Wideman, p. 219), would serve him no purpose otherwise. At an early stage in their visits, John Wideman asks his brother whether he measures his sentence time by the rate of growth in his daughter (p. 35). Perhaps Wideman senses he is missing the point, for he never returns to the analogy. Robby allows how he gauges his body's own rate of resistance against that of his elder brother (p. 219). Robby's index reveals his concern to maintain as much of his original self, when he was sentenced, as he can upon his release. Only in this way can he minimize the portion of his life extracted from him. His victories arrive in small but significant episodes: John gloats at the authorities' inability, despite their best efforts, to extinguish his brother's sexuality: "No way it's spozed to happen. Prisons are organized to prevent it. He's a man in love with a woman, being loved in return. The gates remain locked but for the moment he's holding the key in his hand" (p 212). In this chapter I have deliberately glossed over many other methods of survival/sites of resistance, each as valid as the physical: the consistent flexing of mental energy, via study, keeps one mentally alert. Visitors, especially loved ones (as Robby was privileged to experience), keep one's thoughts and emotions focused on their future well-being, and hence one's own. Other visitors from free society: teachers, guest lecturers, artists and researchers, are reminders of time's passing on the outside, and act as antidotes to gradual,deterioration, or anachrony. The inmates that I met, in the institution where I conducted my research, demonstrated remarkably similar attitudes to those of Robby 30 Wideman and the inmates in Cohen and Taylor's study. It is with these men, and their uses of art as a form of resistance, that the following chapters are concerned. 31 Chapter Three: Methodology Exactitude is not truth . (Henri Matisse) Methodological Orientation Given the nature of my enquiry, I decided a qualitative methodology was most appropriate. The qualitative researcher seeks understanding, rather than the proof of a particular hypothesis. The underlying epistemology of qualitative research is naturalistic, as opposed to the positivism that guides quantitative studies (Lancy, 1993). In particular, I thought my investigation would be best served by a case study. Prisons are closed societies, which free citizens, on the whole, would prefer to remain out-of-sight. A prison offers the outsider/researcher a unique, self-sustaining environment for study. For the purpose of understanding this group's perception of time, and how art practice clarifies and influences that perception, phenomenology guided my study as well. According to Lancy, "phenomenology is best employed in situations that have relatively confined temporal and physical boundaries" (1993, p. 9). Phenomenological research is also open to alternative constructions of reality, an important consideration given the unusual existential circumstances that prison inmates must face every day. Elements of ethnography informed my method of enquiry. Developed by anthropologists from the beginning of this century, "Ethnography, a hybrid activity,... appears as writing, as collecting, as modernist collage, as imperial power, as subversive critique" (Clifford, 1988, p. 13). As a research method it has guided a number of educational studies (Lancy, 1993; Wolcott, 1973; Woods, 1986). Education uses ethnographic methods for different ends from anthropology (Stanhouse, in Lancy, 1993). Case studies, for example, are aimed at the improvement of practice in educational research. Lately, ethnography as a discrete discipline has moved between cultures, neither following anthropology's tradition of mapping the full range of a culture's diversity, nor seeking conclusive, generalizable results (Clifford, 1988). Ray Rist, an anthropologist, 32 notes that: "The term ethnographer is being applied to people neither trained nor having studied in this methodology. The idea of going into the field and allowing issues and problems to emerge ... has given way to the preformulation of problems..." (in Lancy, 1993, p. 8). In the spirit of research methodologies which criticize earlier, positivist assumptions, postmodern ethnography acknowledges its artificial nature, with writing being the researcher's predominant method of communication (Clifford, 1986; 1988; Tyler, 1986). Lately, theorists of research methodology admit to a shift in qualitative research communication procedures, notably, the production of text evolving from the observation-writing dyad (researcher-subject) to one of discourse-speech (researcher and researched as co-producers)(Jansen & Peshkin, 1993). While ideally I would have chosen this latter approach to research, that is, as a shared activity between myself and the volunteer inmate participants, I abandoned the idea because of the overwhelming difficulties involved with full inmate cooperation. These difficulties, including restriction of access to inmates, the seriousness regarding breaches of confidentiality, and paranoia (shared by inmates and staff) surrounding my intentions as a researcher, are intrinsic to life within prison. As problematic as it is, I assumed the traditional role in ethnography of participant-observer. Ideally, this position vis-a-vis the subjects allows one to engage in their everyday activities over a long period of time, and experience first hand the formal and informal processes, schedules and other interactions of a group (Woods, 1986). Participant-observation is predicated upon "an ideology claiming transparency of representation and immediacy of experience" (Clifford, 1986, p. 2). Intrinsic to this notion is an emphasis on observation as the primary mode of data discovery. Until recently, seeing was preferred over other senses, such as hearing, touch and smell (Tyler, 1986). Visual imagery of exotic, oriental cultures was safely 'flattened' and recoloured in order to augment presentation to an occidental readership (Barthes, 1983). Traditional anthropological 33 accounts have presented the researchers' data within this one-point perspective framework: alternative expressions and interpretations were conveniently omitted in the interest of the singular, conclusive reading of a given culture (Clifford, 1986; 1988). As Clifford (1986) notes, participant-observation leaves little room for (other) texts. In the past twenty years, authors versed in feminist and neo-Marxist theory have challenged this notion, based upon the scientific paradigm of positivist and Platonic conclusivity (Clifford, 1986; 1988; Lather, 1991; Tyler, 1986). Their appeals to other constructions of experience, inconclusive results and subjective, reflexive and poetic methods of data gathering have gained influence with the academic disciplines from which they derived. It is with these latter theorists that my presentation is aligned. In particular, I am attracted by the idea of research as an empowering activity for those individuals and societies being studied: a transformational agenda informs my ideology both as a teacher and as a researcher. This rejection of a neutralist stance in research accords with Lather (1991), who adapts Friere's (1970) cogent remark that education is never value-free: neither is research. Intrinsic to this approach - and, ergo, my study - is the notion that theory is discovered through, or 'grounded in' data (Glaser & Strauss, 1967, in Lather, 1991). In practice, the participant-observer's outsider status is never completely forgotten; nonetheless over time one manages to penetrate one or two layers of access to the inner levels of operations of a society. Woods (1986) posits three layers of access: 1) the outer, or public face such as that which one encounters during 'open houses'; 2) the natural, everyday business as long-term visitors are gradually trusted and accepted more; and 3) 'deep penetration,' to the vitals of an organization, as key subjects take the researcher into their confidence. Unlike Wolcott's (1973) classic account, restrictions of access and security concerns circumscribed the 'participant' aspect of my researcher status: for example, experiencing all aspects of the lives of this group of men, such as eating, sleeping, programs and recreation on a day-to-day basis, was unfeasible. 34 Educational research often takes place in institutions 'under siege': the sense of vulnerability that an outsider/researcher induces may throw up a wall of resistance (Lancy 1993). One's motives are suspect, one's allegiances are questioned, and proper etiquette is learned after the fatal faux pas has been committed (Scott, 1989, in Lancy, 1993). These exigencies in many ways could summarize the varying degrees of access and liberty I experienced at the institution to which I was assigned. As with the administrators of many institutions, I had the impression that there was some anxiety that my research findings would amount to evaluation. The Pilot Study During the summer of 1995 I was hired to teach at a medium security correctional facility in eastern Ontario. I was responsible for two grade ten level art classes lasting five weeks. One of the classes was composed of English as a Second Language students, the majority of whom came from Vietnam. I used this opportunity to set up a pilot study with the inmates. My intention was to find a particular aspect to consider within a general study of prison art programs. Initially I wished to investigate what effect(s), if any, art had on inmates' self-esteem. My hunch was that it would improve within the structure of an intensive immersion in art practice, relieving some of the deleterious effects of incarceration. Three inmates agreed to be interviewed, twice; one of them opted to drop out of the study after the first interview. The comments that both of them made, separately, during the second interview intrigued me: both expressed a desire for more time to spend on their art work. This apparently innocent remark presented a paradox: I thought that the last thing anybody serving time for a sentence wanted would be more time, in any form. Yet it made sense when I recalled the level of engagement that I witnessed when teaching the men: For the early classes of this pilot study I prepared a number of drawing lessons designed to sharpen the inmates' skills in observation. On one or two of these occasions I joined the men in the ESL class. My rushed, anxious tempo relaxed as I became absorbed 35 in my drawing. One inmate told me that I should allow them more time to complete their drawings: I was always rushing them. This man (the most gifted artist in the class), was also the most articulate in English. Now that I was immersed in what the others were doing, I understood his criticism. As a teacher, despite my own practice of drawing and painting, I had no concept of the amount of time required for students to engage in this form of mental and physical activity: the completion of these drawings could not, under any circumstances, be imposed by any external agency; each unfolded at the inmate-artist's own pace, according to his internal 'schedule'. Most of the men in the art classes showed a similar focus, a nearly palpable like-mindedness. From other classrooms the students would file out, and wait in the halls for the gates to clear at day's end, but not those from the art class. These men had to be pried almost physically from their seats, and rushed to vacate the school area by 1600 hours. From interviewing the two volunteer inmates, I was intrigued enough that I thought further investigation was warranted into the phenomenology of these unique learners: how does time affect them and how do they see it? And what are the effects of art practice on (these) long term prisoners, particularly with regard to their attittudes and perceptions of time? The Study The five-week art program I taught at the eastern Ontario facility that summer gave me a structure for gaining entry into another prison site, in the lower mainland of British Columbia. While setting up a course of instruction for the purpose of studying a social group is highly artificial, it is considered acceptable to a case study (Creswell, 1994). The differences inherent in the two sites would have made a comparative study difficult: In the first situation, I was invited, and paid to teach a credit course within the auspices of the institution's school, during regular program hours. Unlike the eastern Ontario institution, the staff and inmates who comprised my longer study (see below) were as strange to me 36 as I was to them. More importantly, the art course at the second institution was delivered during the inmates' leisure time. Some comparisons between the two sites, related to this qualitative difference, emerge throughout the data discussion of chapter four. Site Selection Between myself, the director of the Correctional Staff College for British Columbia, and the coordinators of Prison Arts Foundation, we decided upon an appropriate institution. The major constraints guiding my selection were: proximity to the site from U.B.C. (for example, William Head, on Vancouver Island, was too inaccessible for commuting, twice a week, for three hour classes), existence of an ongoing hobby/arts and crafts program on the site, and risk factor of the inmate population. The staff college director took my letter of proposal (see Appendix I) to the directors of the Prison Arts Foundation, who in turn distributed it to three institutions. Although I told the college director I had no aversion to higher security institutions, relating my experience in eastern Ontario prisons, no maximum security institutions were considered. My original intention was to visit an existing art program, perhaps contributing a lesson at the invitation of the resident art instructor, and simply observe. This plan had to be abandoned, when the Correctional Staff College director informed me that there were no ongoing courses in art at any institution in the lower mainland. In order to stay with my intended enquiry, I was compelled to offer one, thereby assuming the dual role of teacher-researcher, an artifice which, as the course unfolded, became increasingly problematic. The facility selected was a large medium-security institution, built in the mid-1970s. The compound sits on a majestic spread of land overlooking the Fraser valley, at the edge of a rural town which maintains a predominantly white, Christian, working class ambience, despite a visible influx in recent years of southeast Asian immigrants. The facility consists of a complex of low-lying structures, linked by semi-open walkways: they are covered, with one side open to landscaped enclosures. This 'open wall' is secured with a chain-link fence spanning the entire height of the walls, greatly reducing the possibility of 37 escape. From outer offices, classrooms and meeting rooms, one can see verdant pastures and distant hills, reinforcing the dire sense of confinement inside. Two rows of chain-link fencing, about four metres high, topped with razor ribbon and barbed wire, and interspersed with guard towers, surround the complex of buildings. Study Population The group of potential volunteers was comprised of up to fourteen men, differing in age (from mid-twenties to mid-forties), personality, background (ethnic, geopolitical, economic, educational) and belief system. These men were notified of the art course by a posting announcing its date and duration. I asked Alicia, the Social Development Coordinator to distribute the announcements throughout the prison on my second visit there. I came to offer a brief art lesson in the hope of generating interest in the course among the men. Many of the original participants later dropped out of the course, and others 'dropped in', rendering the original cohort somewhat difficult to track. For the greater part of the course, around six inmates regularly attended. Timeline Dr. Stephen Duguid, one of my thesis committee members, advised a timeline of twelve weeks for the duration of the art course/site study. This would give me sufficient familiarity with the site and the volunteer participants; also, I hoped that this term would allow enough time to uncover the phenomena I was seeking, that is, any evidence of art making as a coping mechanism in the harsh environment of a medium-security prison. To investigate the volunteers' perceptions of time, I had to rely on the interview format to direct attention to this query; other evidence, such as behaviour, or spontaneous expressions indicating their attitudes to time, would be more difficult to discern, given the limited time and access I had with the inmates: three hours, twice a week. The art course ran in toto from late May to mid-July, being canceled at the mid-point. Up to that time I had spent a total of six weeks in succession, at six hours per week, at the site. The surprise cancellation signaled the end of my field data gathering, and shifted 38 the focus of my enquiry: the feeling of being unjustly 'de-invited' spurred me to reflect on the dynamics of my interactions both with the inmates and with staff. Data Collection Procedures In order to maximize the validity, and ensure accuracy of observations, I took the following approaches: 1) preprogram questionnaires - given to all participants; 2) field notes - primarily of my interactions with staff and inmates, descriptions of the physical site and structure, and reflections on my role as researcher and teacher; 3) interviews - with inmate-participants and with other art instructors who had experience working in incarceral settings (namely, the directors of the Prison Arts Foundation); and 4) analysis of documents and artwork relating to the project. These included reports concerning interactions with inmates, volunteer and visitor orientation materials (including videotapes), and inmates' artworks. With these last items, 'analysis' is understood as formal, aesthetic description, rather than any psychological interpretation, which I am in any case unqualified to give. As the course I offered was not for credit, the issue of evaluation is moot; nonetheless, my experience as a teacher and maker of art at times influenced the kinds of observations and remarks I made about the inmates' art work. On the whole I have attempted to alert the reader to my formalist bias whenever it informed my evaluations. 1) Questionnaires: The questionnaire was distributed during the beginning of the third evening's class, and took about twenty minutes to fill in. As with all new art students, I wished to know the inmates' formal and informal experiences as makers and consumers of art. Here 'consumer' is understood to include not only purchaser, but witness: for example, somebody who attends a visual display of any cultural event, such as an art gallery, museum, zoo or automobile show. Personal background questions were avoided as I considered them intrusive. The questionnaire was two pages in length, with mostly open-ended questions, beside which, underlined blank spaces encouraged short phrase-type answers. To identify their experiences as art consumers, I supplied a list of specific 39 venues, with instructions to check off ones that they had attended, and an additional space, underlined, to add any others not on the list. (See appendix II.) The signing of names, which all participants did, was optional. 2) Field Notes: The collection of field notes constitutes the bulk of the data I collected. For recording observations, I made notes in the evening after a particular class, or the following morning. On occasion, I was unable to make entries until a day or more had passed. Naturally, some bias with interpretation of a situation is inevitable. This bias may be exaggerated by the increase in passage of time between the occurrence and its recording. If the narrative that my notes formed shows myself cast in the role of protagonist, that is an admission of subjectivity which it would be hypocritical to discount, or attempt to diminish. Save descriptions of the most neutral, unpopulated areas, my observations are concentrated upon those interactions I had with inmates and staff. Despite having several opportunities to do so, only once or twice did I endeavor to record observations in class. The few points I jotted in were filled out after class. My self-consciousness when I attempted this was acute. I had the impression that the inmates were aware of my furtive entries, although they showed no notice. Having experienced this situation, wherein I was coolly observed and written about, from a distance of perhaps ten meters, among preschool children, I find this method of social science data collection to be intrusive and paternal. A North American Native woman has described a similar feeling of being almost violated, when a female anthropologist made notes whilst observing her enjoying an intimate moment of hair braiding amongst her female companions. (Unfortunately I cannot locate this source.) Similarly, postpositivist ethnographic theorists have begun critiquing this commonly accepted practice of field data gathering (Lather, 1991). For this reason I rejected the tradition of taking notes in the midst of the study population. Instead, I have relied on my imperfect ability to remember conversations, unusual behaviors and common practices of the inmates. When I wrote about a class immediately 40 afterward, I found that my notes tended to be more pithy and direct. Even the distance in time of a single night worked itself into my memory, in the form of more discursive and introspective prose, more attention to my emotions at the time, and more inductive conclusions. If this constitutes a fault of field collection, then I am in error. While I consider my visual and auditory memory unusually sharp, nonetheless, contrary to Warhol's expressed wish, we are not machines. 3) Interviews: The interviews I conducted primarily focused on the inmates' backgrounds as hobby and art practitioners, as well as their attitudes to, and experiences of, time.As preconstructed interviews are considered incompatible with a phenomenological stance (Lancy, 1993), the questions were designed to allow for a discursive style of conversation, and any probing that I thought might be necessary. The questions I chose to elicit their attitudes to time (see appendix III, questions 16-23) were broad enough to allow the inmates to philosophize as far as they were comfortable, yet pinned to their every day realities. Interviews took place once, after the end of the course. This represented a change in my plans, outlined on the volunteer consent form (Appendix IV), to have two interviews. I had intended to interview the men either singly or in pairs, in the art room, while the rest of the men were busy with their art work. Because the art course was canceled before I could set up a schedule for the first set of interviews, I had to return to the institution about two weeks after the last class. The interviews took place during one evening's regular visitor hours in the Visitor and Correspondence Area, from 1800 hours to 2100 hours, within the institution where I had held the course. As three inmates had agreed to meet with me, I had to allow a maximum of 45 minutes for each interview; this would allow time to 'wind down', during which time I could debrief the inmates as to the categories of my questions, and we could chat informally about sundry matters. Of five inmates who had initially agreed to being interviewed, two rescinded. Another would not allow me to tape record his answers. This 41 person arrived late (he was the last of the three) and as a result our interview was cut short by the termination of visiting hours. An earlier interview took place toward the end of the course, when two of the more outspoken inmates approached me spontaneously to interview me. I made brief notes on the spot, and used the occasion to reflect upon the artificial nature of the research I was conducting. Other, informal interviews occurred when inmates casually approached me to talk during class, or Susan, the acting hobbycraft officer, would share some item of information about an inmate or prison routine. 4) Documents and visual material: Collection of documents is restricted in a medium security correctional facility. On one occasion I asked for a copy of an incident report form. The hobbycraft officer told me that was impossible. Other documents I was able to look at included several manuals for orientation of volunteer and other temporary staff, including a small book published by Canada Corrections, entitled Games Criminals Play. (date and author unknown). The orientation material included three videotapes. These materials are described in detail in chapter four, under the section "Staff Resistance: access and orientation". The other 'documents' are the art works of the inmates, which are described in context throughout chapter four. Data Analysis Once the last day's field notes were gathered, and the interviews transcribed, I sifted through a randomly chronological account of the proceedings of the art course. This account comprised careful notations of each day's events, including all telephone conversations, shopping for supplies, records of all expenditures, conversations with my thesis committee and with the directors of Prison Arts Foundation. Not every lesson day reaped the same amount of writing: some situations lent themselves to 'thicker descriptions' than others. The sum total surpassed 200 pages of rough notes: handwritten, in a small field notebook; and typed on a word processor. 42 As I read through the narrative, I would underline or jot down some of the concerns - mine, the inmates, and those of the staff, - that came up time after time. These concerns began to repeat certain themes, gradually clustering around the eight themes introduced in chapter four. By the time three or more themes began to appear, I decided a greater range of colours to highlight the themes was required. My choice of colours followed no symbolic association, but was motivated by the range of hues available in highlighters. As each theme was assigned a certain colour, the notes soon took on a rainbow hue that not only announced the number of themes throughout, but graphically depicted the complexity of issues which, overlapping, jostled for prominence: a single sentence was often shot through with as many as three colours. Deciding which of the themes should take precedence became a demanding and time-consuming task, one which often ended in a kind of impasse; the result was a tendency to repeat an incident at different places in the body of the discussion of data findings (chapter four). Once hard copies of the entire transcripts and notes were broken down under the appropriate theme headings, I cut and reassembled them on to fresh paper. Some of the notes with overlapping colors were used in more than one section, but generally, where three competing themes occurred, one would predominate. Ultimately I had several sheets of each of eight colors. The section/theme entitled "Security and Space" began as two separate categories, but for want of more evidence, I decided to collapse them into one: as they were concerned with the "hard" data of the institution, that is, the non-negotiable issues of security that are intrinsically connected to the physical plant and its operation, I felt the proximity of these two themes warranted their joining together. Each theme, as I sifted through the (reassembled) notes, gave rise to minor themes; thus sub-headings are found under each of the larger headings of chapter four. From there I arranged the themes into a sequence that corresponded as much as possible with the original chronology of the study. I sought to maintain a narrative flow to the data presentation: this is my preferred 'style', in writing, and one I felt would best serve all t 43 parties involved in the story/ies that unfolded. Particularly as my compromised research efforts formed the thrust of the narrative, I thought this approach would work best as well. Otherwise, I have avoided the tendency to present the data in a general, ongoing manner, with the following exception: If an inmate told me of a particular habit, or attitude, that is prevalent in the institution, I would use his revelation as authority. As I sought greater understanding of the inmates' perceptions, my tendency was to take their remarks at face value - provided they did not seem too unlikely - rather than the opinions of staff. Often an inmate's revelation would find its support in some of the accounts of other art instructors, via the directors of Prison Arts, from conversations with professor Stephen Duguid, who has had considerable experience researching in prisons, or in the published literature. At the same time I have taken care to assign credit to the individual inmate-authority, whenever making any generalizations. Many of the 'leftovers' (the uncoloured notes) from the raw data had to do with feelings, insupportable suspicions and other emotions I was going through at the time of writing. I excluded most of these notes in my analysis, largely because they were secondary to the larger concern, which was with the inmates' lives. To deny that what followed was as much my story as theirs would amount to a kind of lie. Nonetheless, I intended the presentation to reflect a more balanced view, which one arrives at, often, only through time. By reducing the extreme aspects of my own subjectivity, yet including a large quantity of first-level data, I follow Woods' (1986) prescription to researchers, in order to permit readers to draw their own conclusions, and feel (or not) their own vicarious emotions. Bias and Subjectivity In the above admission I realize I am entering a contentious arena, the issue of subjectivity. Once thebete noir of positivist research methodology, subjectivity has been steadily gaining credence in postmodern research practices. It is closely aligned with another thorny issue, bias. Together these aspects of sociological research are receiving 44 overdue attention as feminist and postpositivist research theorists address new approaches to research praxis in the spirit of postmodernism (Clifford, 1986; Jansen & Peshkin, 1993; Lather, 1991; Tyler, 1986). The following discussion is intended to situate my approach within this literature. Once considered a methodological weakness, which the scrupulous researcher exorcized in the collection and presentation of data, subjectivity is now understood as a necessary component of qualitative research, particularly in its epistemological and methodological aspects. Shipman (1982) reminds social researchers that not only one's hypothesis, but one's discipline, education, value system and personal philosophy will direct the kinds of observations that one seeks, makes, and writes. Jansen and Peshkin (1993) add that one's social class, gender, sexual orientation and ethnicity are factors which together predispose the researcher to certain findings; these factors can and should be admitted as biases early on, in order to alert others to the nature of the conclusions presented. Agar (in Jansen & Peshkin, 1993), asks ethnographers to state the nature of their biases, and how they can document the way they operate. He notes that ethnographers shape the responses of subjects. Rubin (in Jansen & Peshkin, 1993) reveals her Freudian training in clinical psychology, in asserting that it is our personal experiences which shape all knowledge. As she points out, lack of awareness of our own subjectivity traps us inside that subjectivity. Bias and subjectivity result from interactions between the researcher and the researched, according to Ginsberg and Matthews (in Jansen & Peshkin, 1993). Similar to Rubin, they laud this intersubjectivity, finding its roots in the psychoanalytic process of transference and countertransference. Subjects may, according to this view, act upon researchers in unexpected ways, as they (researchers) substitute for various figures (authority, parent, and so on) in the subjects' lives and histories. Researchers may find the setting and the subjects conjure long-forgotten feelings and associations, which will 45 influence their emotions while in the field, and shape their conclusions in the presentation of data. Roman and Apple (in Jansen & Peshkin, 1993) adopt a materialist-feminist approach to ethnography that 1): is antipositivist in the relationships between theory and data and researcher and researched; 2): credits the subjective experiences of researchers; 3): addresses underlying power issues that affect access to, and rapport with, subjects; and 4): acknowledges the researcher's own class, ethnicity, gender, age and sexual orientation. Each of these four aspects of subjectivity influenced the process of data gathering in which I was engaged. They surface in context in the data discussion in chapter four, and are discussed in detail in chapter five. Because of the methodological question I had prepared, concerning the issue of inmates' perception of time, I was sensitized to any remarks the inmates made with regard to that area. As their remarks were generally offered only after my direct prompting, many of the observations I made in the course of the time I spent at the institution, involved other issues. Where my deeper biases and personal credos surface, I hope I have alerted the reader to how they have guided my observations. Some of these biases will surface more conclusively, in the final discussion of the data in chapter five. Other biases may resist my active scrutiny, remaining buried in my unconscious. Names and Language I have changed the names of all the participants, staff as well as inmates, with the following exceptions: myself, Gary Wyatt and Marion Otterstrom (with permission), the latter two representing Prison Arts Foundation: While they had some involvement in the progress of the course, their reputation as experts in arts programs in prisons lends authority to my discussion of other art/s programs and the accounts of other artists and instructors, (see 'Cooperation' section, chapter four). Also, I interviewed them beyond the confines of the institution, in order to validate some of my experiences. Other proper names I have kept belong to published writers: Alan Duff and Susan Musgrave. 46 The names I have chosen for the inmates parallel as much as possible their real names, and where applicable, the ethno-linguistic source, as a way of indicating the various ethnicities of the participants. I retained the use of surnames for the two most powerful mandarins, Messrs. Hyde and Sandstone, not because I did not learn their first names, but I felt their lofty, distancing airs were better suggested through keeping this formal term of address. The institution I was assigned to is nameless, in accordance with the guidelines of the U.B.C. ethics review committee. At the same time its general location renders complete anonymity difficult, as logistical details are relevant to the problems I encountered and other issues that are raised. I have identified one institution, William Head, as its reputation as a comfortable, minimum security institution is relevant to issues I raise in chapter four. In the data discussion I have tried to maintain the kinds of language I used and the expressions the inmates preferred. The inmates were surprisingly articulate, informed and generally polite. In the body of the data discussion (chapter four) the reader will find several instances where the inmate or staff person speaks in quotations. Other than where indicated, these quotations are not verbatim transcripts of tape recorded interviews. This license on my part approximates more accurately the speaker's voice, than the awkward use of qualifiers, such as 'that' or 'whether', as in: X asked me whether I wished I could have thrown him out, versus: X said, "Don't you wish you could throw me out?". There is a sense of immediacy conveyed by the use of quotations that is missing in the more 'correct' rendering. Whose Voice? Having said the above, I admit the issue of speaking on behalf of these men is problematic with respect to paraphrasing often disenfranchised members of society. Alcoff (1993) asks social researchers to consider this issue whenever we collect and present data that purport to stand in for the voices of the subjects of our research. She points to the contention surrounding such traditionally vaunted practices of speaking on behalf of others 47 in anthropology, when summarizing and translating into writing the spoken words of one's subjects. More and more often, the silent 'other' is claiming centre stage, demanding to be heard in her or his own voice. Since the admission of gender studies and other postmodernist, inclusionary guidelines in academia, notions of author, authority and authorization are being constantly challenged and revised. In educational research, speaking about and speaking for others, namely children, has been an assumed right, understood as having similar dominion to the rights of parents over their children. Prisoners' access to self-expression in some ways mimics that of children; their right of speech, among other freedoms, has been seriously curtailed subsequent to their conviction. Combined with a typical history of restricted educational opportunities, prisoners are doubly handicapped in the opportunities to communicate their stories and points of view. The literature on prison life spans a continuum of empathy and understanding, from the first-person accounts of prisoners (Boyle, 1978; Caron, 1978; Leary, 1970), through varyingly empathetic field accounts of socio-anthropologists, journalists, teachers and social workers, (Carrel & Laing, 1982; Cleveland, 1989; Cohen & Taylor, 1972; Liebman et al, 1994; Peaker & Vincent, 1991; Piazza, 1996; 1997; Szekely, 1982), into a broad field of legal, medical and psycho-sociological literature of deviance (see references in Foucault, 1979, and Harris, 1991), to antipathetic and simplistic publications by authors whose authority is highly questionable. One of these last publications, a slim book entitled Games Criminals Play (author and date unknown), is discussed in chapter four. Other than the first person accounts, few of these authors speak in a voice that any prisoner would heartily endorse. For one reason, the use of jargon pertaining to that author's field of enquiry denies access of understanding by the uninitiated. For another, distribution of relevant, up to date material is restricted within the institutions by administrators who are often as much the subjects of sociological study as the prisoners themselves. 48 These realities of inmates' existence support, in part, a justification of speaking for them, while maintaining constant vigilance over one's intentions, and the ultimate ends or purpose for engaging in the discourse. To simply retreat from the discourse, as many members of the disempowered would have us do, is to abnegate a social responsibility belonging to members of a minority of educated citizens with access to corridors of power (Alcoff, 1993). The issue of responsibility cannot be overstated whenever researchers deem to tell the stories of those they would study: even the power imbalance implicit in the researcher-subject relationship implies a dominance on the part of the researcher, a throwback to the positivist era of scientific rationality, when the doctor would study and diagnose the patient (the subject as object). The research methods I adopted took the form of a dialogue, in which I played a central part. In the subsequent textualization of this 'event,' understood in Foucault's (1977, in Alcoff, 1993) term as including speaker, words, hearers, location, language and so on, I have tried to fix the momentary, the specific and the incidental, and to avoid the general and the hearsay. In so doing, I wish to present anything but a conclusive document. To describe my account as a 'speaking to,' in Alcoff s sense, suggests the existence of an ongoing discourse in prisoner-staff and prison-society relations, in which inmates and ex-inmates freely take part. Unfortunately, there is yet scant evidence of this situation in prison research, even in the advent of deconstructionist, inclusive political and academic writing. For example, inmates are denied access to internet as well as mobility which members of a free society take for granted. The coda, 'nothing in, nothing out' refers to control and censorship of information as well as material contraband. I am therefore compelled to speak, to a certain extent, on behalf of the men whose lives I touched and who touched mine. Reciprocity Ideally, the more feedback a researcher obtains from subjects, the better: the desired quality in postmodern ethnography, of true discourse, as opposed to a singular 49 monologue, is approached more closely, the more inclusive one's methods of data gathering (Clifford, 1988; Lather, 1991; Tyler, 1986). While reciprocity in field work has been known to generate rich data (Wax, 1952, in Lather, 1991), the opportunity to show one's data to the subjects themselves is problematic in a prison situation. Volunteer participants may rescind their cooperation without notice, a condition I found quite common in a correctional facility. Inmates often wish to present themselves in their most appealing image, and my fear was that, should I return the transcripts of the interviews we had, one or two of the respondents might have wished to alter, or withdraw, relevant passages. Admissions of illicit drug use in prison, for example, probably comprised the most sensitive passages, from a punishment concern; for me they indicated evidence of theories of time that I was seeking. My other concern with sending copies of transcripts to the volunteer interview subjects was the possibility of information leaking to the wrong people, namely staff who might seize such documents to use against those inmates, or other inmates who might feel implicated, and exert some form of retribution of their own. None of the men I interviewed had anything to say about their mates, one way or the other, but I thought the chances of the transcripts falling into the wrong hands was too great a risk to take. For this reason I regret the circumstances that prevented what I had hoped for, a true sharing of tales, in the narrative I have constructed. By whose approval, whose authorization, then, do I presume to render the accounts of these men's lives? I do not wish to present a generalizable summary that would speak for the experiences of all male inmates in Canada, or even British Columbia: I assume no comprehensive understanding of each of the inmates' plights, among the men I was privileged to meet and work with.What I describe instead is a specific situation that occurred over a period of time, roughly two months. Readers with any involvement or interest in the life of prisons will, I hope, recognize something of their experience (the 50 former group), or imagine what it was like (the latter group). In this way I hope to add to the literature that speaks about, not for, those who would be denied any voice at all. Validity As with other aspects of research formerly considered sacrosanct (such as objectivity), postmodern and antipositivist theorists have lately criticized validity, especially within qualitative research methodology. The former, quantitative model of validity, which proponents of qualitative methodology adopted in their early practice, corresponded to a psychometric paradigm in which reliability and generalizability were entwined, and shared equal importance (Kvale, 1995). Validity gained credence as a process for developing sounder interpretations of observations. The positivist notion that there is a one-to-one correspondence between elements in the real world and our knowledge of it has few serious supporters today. In 1971 Cronbach (in Kvale, 1995) noted that one problem with validity is that 'value-free standards for validity' is a contradiction in terms. Recent practitioners such as Lincoln and Guba (in Kvale, 1995), reinterpret validity to reflect the particular, the vernacular and the personal, with a focus on daily life and narrative. Accordingly, truth can be ascertained in several ways, among which are trustworthiness, credibility, dependability and comfirmability. Kvale describes three aspects of validity that are pertinent to postmodern methodology: craftsmanship, communication and action. As a form of craftsmanship, validity is ongoing, entrenched in the process of research through continual checking of one's findings: analyzing sources for biases, following up hunches and surprises, and getting feedback from informants, to name but a few methods. I have alluded to my problems with obtaining feedback from the inmates; as a way of validating many of my experiences, particularly with staff, I sought the opinions of other practitioners in the field of prison education, namely the directors of the Prison Arts Foundation and Professor Duguid. 51 The communicative approach to validity relies on a negotiated understanding, whereby theories and impressions of reality are shared, debated and ultimately agreed upon: "With the conversation as the ultimate context within which knowledge is to be understood, the nature of the discourse becomes essential." (Kvale, 1995, p. 31). Eisner (1991, in Kvale, 1995), supports the personal, literary and poetic as valid sources of knowledge. Kvale describes two main approaches to communicative validity, transactional psychotherapy and philosophical discourse. My own interactions with the inmates and with staff suggested both of Kvale's domains; ultimately, however, the narrative I have constructed is my own: Missing from Kvale's prescription is the role of impartial witness. I have tried to minimize the most obvious distortions in my account; other participants would surely differ in theirs. Kvale delineates one ultimate aspect of postmodern research: action. He describes this end result as a pragmatic validity. In this neo-Marxist orientation, the relevance of research findings lies in their ability to effect change. Knowledge as action supersedes mere observation. According to Kvale, communicative validity has an aesthetic aspect; that of pragmatic validity is ethical. Truth according to this view involves taking whatever action is required to produce a desired result; hence ethics and values are summoned. From a psychotherapeutic dimension, "...research and treatment go hand in hand." (Freud, in Kvale, 1995, p. 33). In the larger socio-political arena, the impact of these changes necessitates the cooperation, if not consensus, of the wielders of the instruments of power. Lather (1991) supports a similar approach to ethnography which she calls 'empowering' (after Friere, 1970) and participatory research. Her concern is with research as praxis; its ultimate aim is transformation and emancipation. The preceding discussions of validity and subjectivity did not explicitly guide my research; nonetheless they support the methodological approach that I followed in my data gathering. The following chapter describes the extent to which I was able to implement that approach, and what I discovered as a result. 52 Chapter 4: Discussion of Data Colection: Eight Themes From the field notes I gathered and the interviews held, both with the prisoners at the Visitor Control Area, and with the directors of Prison Arts Foundation, eight themes emerged. This chapter has been organized around those themes. They are: 1): Researcher/Teacher Dilemmas: 2): Security and Space: 3): Staff Resistance: 4): Inmate Resistance: 5): Confrontations: 6): Co-operation and Art/s Programs That Work; 7): Prison Routine and Time Management: and 8): Inmates' World. I have arranged them according to a logic of deeper levels of penetration, to paraphrase Woods (1986), rather than following a strict chronology.Within each theme is a subset of other themes, or issues. For example, under "Art/s Programs That Work", I have included other arts programs, such as theatre and creative writing, that have succeeded in other correctional settings. Any observations I was privy to, other than those concerning the most neutral, 'fixed' areas (such as physical space and routine security checks), were in reference to interactions between me, staff and prisoners. Many of their remarks were promted by my presence. As well, during the interviews after the dissolution of the course, I found occasions where the inmates appeared to want to give me the 'correct' or safe answer. Some observations will appear in two or more categories: prisons are fluid environments in spite of the hard surfaces and highly visible boundaries that contain them. Schedules change, inmate populations rise and fall, with constant adjustments being felt as so many ripples across a wide sea of programs. Staff are promoted, transferred, and relocated within a particular institution. Some of this sudden change in routine is deliberate: guards' shifts are constantly juggled, for example, in order to reduce staff s predictability, particularly those who might be perceived as weaker, more open to manipulation, by prisoners. Wherever observations are deemed to straddle two themes, the reader will be alerted, and may find them continued under the appropriate theme heading. 53 Researcher/Teacher Dilemmas Entering an institution as both teacher and researcher introduces a dual function: the roles may at times harmonize; more often they are in opposition. To the prisoners, the researcher role is never ignored, and casts a shadow of suspicion over the teacher role, however nobly one dispenses one's duties in that capacity. This section is intended to illustrate some of the tensions inherent in this dilemma. I have organized them around the following concerns: 'instructional/curriculum dilemmas', 'enrollment and attendance', 'materials and logistics', and'conflicting roles: researcher versus teacher'. Instructional/Curriculum Dilemmas This category includes any instance when the art course conflicted with the inmates' values and previous learning. Having a background as an instructor of secondary level art in public schools, I esteem those building blocks of visual grammar, the elements and principles of design. For an early class, I asked the men to examine the effects of one of the elements, value, and how it could be manipulated in their drawings. On sheets of manila paper they laid a thin cover of charcoal, then proceeded to pull out the shapes, working in a light-additive process, using blunt erasers. As source, a table was set up with household items on a white sheet, illuminated by a pole lamp. The ambient light of the summer evening was sufficient for them to see their own drawings. While they worked I went about kibitzing individuals, and drawing their attention to the varieties of light and shadow. On the following evening, I asked the class what it was we had been paying attention to, in our drawings of the previous class. My enquiry was answered with blank stares. When I reminded them that it was light, a few men showed expressions of recall. Apparently, isolating this aspect of the visual domain was a foreign practice to these men. I felt their exposure to this element should occur heuristically, rather than in a dogmatic lecture-style. 54 My purpose in emphasizing this traditional, discipline-based approach within the structure of a leisure-time prison art program is indeed suspect: a more sensitive consideration of the inmates' world, their needs and desired outcomes, would have served them more favourably. As an academically-trained art educator I have supported certain fundamental tenets of art, among them the idea that without a thorough investigation of the elements and principles of art, one's aesthetic vocabulary is seriously diminished. When one cannot identify those elements from the natural world, one's choices as a maker of artifacts, or art consumer, are limited. The danger of this formalist approach manifests itself when, as a teacher of art, one is confronted with alternative values, namely the imagery that predominates and inspires people in incarceral settings. This imagery can encompass a limited but imaginative range from their lives on the outside, their fantasies, and from popular graphic media. Of note is the dearth of imagery from their immediate surroundings: prisoners will typically choose to work on images that allow a psychic escape from, rather than a reminder of, prison (Riches, 1994). Within this practice, any formalist concerns are secondary. On the evening described above, I showed them overhead transparencies of charcoal drawings by artists. One example, a picture of a woman in repose, expressed with beauty and economy the elements of mass, volume and value. My efforts to draw their attention to such lofty sentiments were met with derisive laughter: to the men, the woman depicted was obese. I found the men's reaction crude and sexist, and in defense, took the aesthetic high road. I mentioned that an image can have appeal for other reasons than the conventional meaning of the subject portrayed - in this case a stout woman. I doubt whether I made many converts at the Temple of Art that day. At the same time, I wonder whether I chose nude and partially draped female figures as a way of inducing the inmates' attention. If so, my reaction was in some way hypocritical. A hazard of teaching any adult population arises whenever one's intended curriculum does not match the knowledge or ability levels of the students. There are few 55 accurate means available of 'pretesting' a class of adults, especially prisoners, for preparedness in art. One standard I have relied upon is a general interest and experience questionnaire which I adjust to suit the needs and profile of the members of my class (see appendix II). On this questionnaire is a list of art museums and special events, encompassing a broad range of twenty possible venues. To my surprise, all of the seven inmates who responded checked off at least twelve categories. My general guidelines, based upon what formal knowledge of art I had assumed inmates possessed, had to be reworked constantly. Tasks I would take for granted, such as using a metric ruler, posed a daunting hurdle to some of the older students who had left their formal education before the metric system had been established in Canadian public school classrooms. On one occasion, introducing colour theory, I presented the class with a video on color mixing. To my dismay the production values of this local effort were low-budget, and 'pre-dundant': what I wanted to lead the men through - how to mix colours from the three primaries - was about to be revealed. Sensing my agitation with the program, which I found boring, one inmate leaned over and told me, "You must have attention deficiency syndrome." [sic] The inmates watching the program were rapt with attention. My assumption in this case, about what they already knew, had to be laid aside. I stopped the video at the point where the host was about to demonstrate the magic moment. This part was better left to the inmates' own discovery. I distributed the materials and systematically demonstrated the placement of the primaries, mixing of other colours, and their placement on the wheel, using oil pastels. The inmates repeated my applications on their own colour charts, in coloured pencil. That evening's class, albeit very transmission-oriented, was one of the most successful of the course. Within the grey confines of the Program Office Vestibule, little circles of color blossomed and shone defiantly. The men painted seriously, and had to be rushed out of the P.O.V. in order for me to be evacuated from the premises by 2100 hours. 56 Unfortunately the carry-over of this exercise was minimal. Rarely did an inmate bring his colour wheel to a subsequent class, despite the obvious care lavished on its creation. Any manipulation of colour temperatures, or increased sophistication in mixing of colours, was difficult to see in their later work. One inmate, a self-taught painter, told me he had devised his own colour mixing theory, but was glad to have a guide as systematic as this one. This fellow later dropped out of the class, frustrated by the follow-up painting exercise: they were to reproduce colour photographs of their choice, using a grid scale to enlarge their photos, then paint them in the complementary hues of the originals. The inmate asked why we could not simply paint from life: this exercise was engineering, not art. I admitted we were using engineering techniques - the grid - but in the service of art, as a way of preparing the inmates to approach painting from real life. It was easier, I rationalized, to make the transition from a two-dimensional original onto a flat surface, than to start with a three-dimensional source. Doug heard me out, then left. This outcome harmed my confidence in the approach I was taking. Articulate and thoughtful, Doug had told me earlier that evening that he had much to share regarding the variable qualities of time he had experienced while serving his sentence. Art making had a profound impact on these experiences, he said. He had been cued by reading my volunteer consent form (appendix IV). Now I had lost one of my potentially best volunteers. What did adult inmates know? What did they not know, and how could I help them overcome their resistance to new information? What did they want to learn? To expect that with this exercise or any other, I could satisfy all their expectations, was too optimistic even for me. If a match between my background, as an art teacher, theorist and practitioner, and theirs, was ever achieved, it was ill-fitting and short-lived. A formalist orientation also framed the approach I took with any critique of inmates' work. Such critiques occurred in an ad-hoc fashion, were generally one-on-one, with little input - but much attention - from the other inmates. Hoping to familiarize inmates with verbal critiques, and elicit their participation, I showed several slides of other artists' 57 work, at regular times throughout the course. The slides were selected to illustrate the predominant element we were examining, or art process, such as printmaking or collage, we were doing. At times I found myself challenging or 'correcting' an inmate's opinion. For example, during the class with the overhead transparencies of nudes, I showed a detail from a self-portrait by Kathe Kollwitz. The detail, of her eye, was mistakenly shown on its side, so the eye line ran vertically. Before I could set it aright, one inmate, Jabhar, remarked that it resembled a vagina. I immediately cautioned him on his use of language: a woman - Susan, the Hobbyshop officer, was in our midst, within earshot. Moments later, Jabhar challenged me: Would I say that art was in the eye of the beholder? I reflected a moment, and allowed that was a reasonable statement. Then, he pursued, if he saw a vagina in the image I showed, that was sufficient for him. I said that line of reasoning could permit other viewers to see any body parts, adding, the vagina shape was obvious, now that he drew everybody's attention to it. He asked, if it was so obvious, why did I jump on him when he made the remark? I could see no happy conclusion to this repartee; so I explained that was how the unconscious worked with visual material; once we saw it revealed, it could no longer recede back into our unconscious. This answer appeared to stymie, rather than satisfy, Jabhar. From that day forward, he appeared to assume the role of watchdog in the class, waiting to pounce on any contradiction or ambiguity I might utter. This glimpse into Jabhar's value system, his preoccupation with sex, will be elaborated in greater detail under the theme 'Inmates' Values'; I mention this instance as one in which I felt divided: an overriding sense of propriety, in mixed company, caused me to censure Jabhar undeservedly. The rift my action created impaired the hoped-for candor that can only come from the inmates' secure sense of freedom of expression, and acceptance from me as a researcher and teacher. With each new unit, I would haul out the usual cartel, a slide set of famous artists, giving a brief art-historical overview in order to locate a process within some context. The 58 thought that this approach was not working with these men, who would have preferred to launch directly into the process, never changed my strategy. What purpose did my efforts to impart a new vocabulary serve these men? Our last completed unit was collage. The spontaneity and messiness of this process, combined with a minimum of technique, augured unpromising results with a class of adult men who have fairly fixed notions of art, within which, skill and technique rank high. With this process I had hoped to circumvent the inmates' concentration on labour-intensive, product-oriented crafts such as leatherwork and stained glass, in order to access their expressive sides, their emotional lives, and thereby effect a transformation of their basic self-concepts. We viewed the video, "The Threshold of Liberty" (1992), a British-produced documentary on the Dada and Surrealist movements of the early part of this century. I hoped the mention of a few artists would trigger their memory of those to whom I had previously introduced the class, with large monographs of Max Ernst and Kurt Schwitters in particular. Luck was with me: Neil opened a book on Ernst and drew Sean's attention to an image which had just flashed upon the screen. For the previous class I had assembled some materials on the Surrealists and other collage artists, namely Kurt Schwitters and Max Ernst, along with various textures and images typical of their working methods - caning, burlap, other cloth, bits of wallpaper, and photocopies of Victorian engravings. The exercise was to identify a wild animal for oneself, then select images from the magazines and Victorian illustrations. As a theme I suggested animals in captivity, drawing the obvious parallel to their own condition of confinement. Nobody appeared to be bothered by the glib psycho-therapeutic tone of the exercise: perhaps they felt safe enough to venture to express an aspect of their lives that needed to come out. Everybody got started quickly, and soon were engaged in their pieces. After about half an hour, Neil, the first finished, called me over to interpret his collage piece. Given the art therapeutic nature of the exercise, I did not consider it my role to 59 interpret his piece. Any interpretation should come from the client, the person who made the work (Karban, 1994). Confronted with a hastily-cut array of buildings, highways, bridges and so forth surrounding a polar bear in a pristine setting, I was at a loss to interpret. I expressed some confusion with the way he had distant shapes overlapping the central, close shot of the bear. I could not make sense of it, spatially, I told him. "That's my point," Neil said with obvious annoyance. He deciphered the image for me: human civilization, encroaching on Nature, was threatening to wipe it out. I retreated to my comfortable post as formalist critic, and pointed out the sloppy arrangement which impaired the impact of his statement. Rather than praise his effective piece of agit-prop, I had grasped at some excuse for him to continue on the work, not to be satisfied with this brief burst of creative effort. Some art therapists such as Karban (1994) believe that any art criticism in a therapeutic setting is aggressive. Unfamiliar with the therapeutic dimension of art practice, as an instructor, I might have had a more disruptive situation from the awkward and insensitive way I handled this interaction. Neil seemed to mark me out from that first, introductory session, and I was quick to get ensnared in his little set-ups. In this situation an opportunity to appear clever, to advance at his expense, was too tempting to ignore. In any case, then as at other times, my encouragement to push his art work further was ignored. In a leisure-time setting, with competition for inmates' time from other programs, any incitement to added effort is generally rejected: when an inmate has invested sufficient effort in a particular exercise, he or she feels no compulsion to remain for the duration of the class, and may simply leave at any time (Otterstrom & Wyatt, 1996, in conversation). Strong arguments are needed to convince an inmate of the value of taking a longer, more traditional procedure, rather than skipping any unnecessary steps in the interest of expediency. 60 One new student who attended the last two classes, a unit in linoleum printmaking, asked me in the design transfer stage, why we could not simply draw our image directly onto the linoleum surface, then begin carving. I answered that it was important to work out one's composition beforehand, paying attention to the distribution of lights and darks, and considering the impact of the reversal of the image, upon printing. Further, I mentioned, this was the traditional method for many artistic processes, explaining that the art-historical term cartone is the root of cartoon, in which, traditionally, the artist worked out his design and then used the cartone to transfer his image to a wall or other surface. My little lesson in art history seemed to have no impact on Abe, who nonetheless went through the steps good-naturedly. Of the remaining three students, two gave up early; one was Neil, who had already demonstrated an extremely limited patience, even within this classroom profile. The other student had to leave to attend a regular meeting, but as he had an already-prepared design (an eagle, with wings spread) and his own set of carving tools, he appeared earnest in his promise to complete the carving on his own and be ready to print the following evening. Then as at other times, I found myself straining to explain, to fill these non-cognoscenti with my bookish learning. My traditional high school role as an art teacher/aesthete/artist was one that refused to die. Yet it ran counter to my express purpose as researcher: to find out their experiences, their values, knowledge, needs and desires. Several times I asked whether the inmate/students were satisfied with the course content. All save Neil and his buddy Sean answered with mute expressions. The course began with some old-fashioned exercises intended to sharpen their visual sense and their hand-eye coordination. About half-way through, it would open up to allow more unusual and interesting projects: papier-mache, plaster casting, clay, animated film, and finishing with a four week project of their own choosing, to develop a medium explored in the previous weeks (see appendix V). Linocut was one process that I expected would appeal to their preference for planning, skill, use of knives, carving and printing. The financial 61 incentive of producing cards which they could sell through the Visitor and Correspondence Area was another potential draw. What happened? On what turned out to be the last evening of regular classes, during which only Abe returned to print his linocut, Susan ascertained that we could hold the class in the room known as 'Social D.'. This was the room I had staked out on my first day of orientation, with Alicia, the coordinator of space allocation for prisoners' leisure-time activities. Susan notified the security officer to make an announcement as to the change of venue for the class, and together we spent about twenty minutes seeking out the light switch for the space. Eventually an inmate had to be called over to show us. I set up the equipment and Abe soon appeared. I waited for the others to show up. None did. Perhaps half an hour passed, then Neil and Sean strode in, visibly excited. Neil took command. He demanded to know what I was up to, what was my true agenda with the art course. I calmly replied that it was all clearly laid out on the consent forms. This did not appear to satisfy Neil. He gave me a specific list of 'do's and don'ts' for my course; Seeing the virtual non-attendance, and fearing the dissolution of the course, I was anxious for any strategy available to salvage the course. I considered Neil's advice with extreme interest. Neil told me to drop the course. It was a ruse, he said, and fooled nobody. I should simply put away the bag of tricks and ask the inmates themselves how they felt about time, art and leisure activities in prison. I answered that that possibility was unlikely, given inmates' resistance to researchers, and their territorial behaviour in the hobbyshop. Neil and Sean offered some suggestions, which I wrote down as they dictated. They are summarized here: * Don't offer the art course during inmates' free time. They have other activities, such as weight lifting and canteen, competing for their time. * Native art work is popular, not only to the Native population, but many other men in the institution. If I could offer that I could probably look forward to greater numbers in the class. 62 * Neil suggested the art course might be a little too high-level for the majority of participants, many of whom have short attention spans. Sean concurred, "You get a lot of crack babies in here". When I asked what the inmates would like to do, they answered: animation, clay, sculpture, painting and drawing. Enrollment and Attendance Just as ticket sales indicate the success of a theatre performance, the voluntary attendance at a course offered within the prison site during leisure time will give a true indication of its viability. As accurate as Neil's recommendations were, they arrived too late. Naively, I expected the art course would be an easy sell. I told those inmates who attended my introductory class that I was hoping for between fifteen and twenty volunteer students. I envisioned turning away extra men at the thirty mark, on the first day. Instead, thirteen participants showed up, including the outgoing hobbyshop officer, Tanya. From that day the numbers continued to drop. By the beginning of the second month, the numbers had stabilized at around six or seven. Sean told me then, that since the numbers had settled out, perhaps they could concentrate on what the remaining men wanted to do. Every evening of class I had the same anxiety: would a sufficient number of men wend their way to the art area to justify the course's continued existence? Or did they have more important places to be? Would the attendance peter out before the program ran its course? I made the logistical error of arriving late on the first night of regular classes. Neil criticized me for my tardiness, telling me that for prisoners, structure is very important within their world. I noticed the inmates operated by another set of principles when it came to their own punctuality: rarely would a full complement of men arrive for class before twenty minutes had passed. During this time I would make myself busy with paperwork. There seemed to be endless forms to distribute and collect. I found small talk difficult, although my discomfort lessened as the weeks passed. Except for Colin, who by his 63 loquaciousness made himself an outsider to the group, or Neil, whose verbal thrusts typically carried a hidden barb, the men were clamlike, taciturn. There was no point in forcing them. A few times, some of the men would come forward, quietly, when the class was well under way, and share details of their past lives on the outside. These moments were the richest for me, as both teacher and researcher, for they came unsolicited, were freely offered and generally unguarded. They bespoke both a desire for communication and a level of trust with me. Their remarks are treated under the section, 'Inmates' World'. Material and Logistical Problems My initial letter of request was picked up by the director of Prison Arts Foundation, a non-profit provincial funding agency for artists working in prisons. Since I had to sell myself as a researcher, I knew any enticement to accept me was contingent upon the least incursion into the routine of prison staff. This meant, primarily, that my course of art and research would not cost them a penny, in material, personnel, extra space or any ancillary capital outlay. I confidently assured the host institution that I would provide all materials and services without charge. Incidentals such as how I would pay for materials, or get out to the institution - some 60 kilometers east of my home - would, I assumed, be forthcoming by virtue of my polite asking. I also expected to depend upon the largesse of the hobbyshop officer, who, I reasoned, would see the logic in providing a good portion of the materials for her charges, since they would be the primary users. I hoped to stay within an estimated budget of $200.00 - 300.00. Perhaps for this reason, when somebody suggested the inmates be responsible for the cost and care of their own materials, through the purchase of art kits, I hastily agreed. After tendering the best prices, I offered to collect the materials we would require, and assemble them into the individual kits. The inmates had a discretionary account, known as Current Account Deposit, or C.A.D., from which they could finance their kits. I suggested a ballpark figure of about $15.00. When I reached a reasonable summary of items, 64 including a sturdy container from Canadian Tire, the total had climbed to nearly $50.00. With the help of Prison Arts, who promised up to $200.00 toward materials, I brought the reworked sum back to the inmates. After much negotiating, we settled for the sum of $20.00. The inmates were allowed to spend up to $5.00 per week from their C.A.D.; hence a $20.00 outlay represented four weeks' allowance, or two pay periods. Thus considerable advance planning had to be worked out, to ensure the money was available when it came time to order the kits. The matter of the art kits threatened to derail the course. Neither I nor Susan wished to commit to investing until the inmates could guarantee the money was in their accounts, and would be there when it came time to distribute the kits. While I waited, various inmates capitulated, or threatened to quit, or wished to buy parts of a kit, claiming they already possessed certain items from it. The date the art kits finally were assembled, and I had invested nearly $200.00 of my own money, was the day the course was canceled. Naturally, at that point not a single inmate, nor, therefore, Susan, wished to follow through on their part of the arrangement. Had the art kits been made available to those six individuals earlier, this tangible evidence of their commitment might have persuaded them to continue the investment of their time as well. With each passing week, art kitless, the inmates' frustration mounted. Neil laid the onus of blame squarely at my feet. I told him the matter was in the hands of the institution: I had done all I could do to expedite the release of funds. Neil taunted me, "Passing the buck too, are you?" I protested my innocence but of course the arrow had found its mark. A few days after the course was canceled, Susan told me over the phone that the institution would not allocate the funds, and therefore Prison Arts was retracting its financial aid as well. I would be left with six unwanted art kits. I had some difficulty explaining what this reversal of their promise meant to me. I had shopped at more than six different stores, and tendered a special discount or sale price with most, long after the sale period had ended. In other words, favors were done for me; I hardly felt keen to return all 65 the items to said suppliers. Susan listened to my panic-laced protests, then calmly said, "I get the feeling you aren't being very cooperative with us, Graeme". I resisted a litany of indignation, but quietly agreed that we should wait to hear from Prison Arts to determine the fate of the art kits. When I called Gary Wyatt of Prison Arts that evening, he told me the main concern they had with the art kits was with providing funds toward the purchase of art materials for the sole and personal use of the inmates, something they are averse to doing under any circumstances. Normally they will provide materials they have, or allocate funds toward their purchase, when an artist brings a program into the prison. But when the program finishes, any remaining materials come back to Prison Arts. He agreed to buy back all art supplies I had collected and parceled into each kit. The kits themselves, plastic tackle boxes, I was able to return to Canadian Tire. I cannot recall who suggested the art kits in the first place. In a way they came to symbolize the art course itself - long in gestation, yet underutilized; supported initially, then rejected by the inviting institution, and ultimately delivered back to the same service provider, Prison Arts Foundation. They were responsible for matching my request to the host site. The art kits consumed only part of my material concerns. For each class paper, paints, brushes and drawing media needed to be in place. I made an arrangement with the art technician at the U.B.C. Faculty of Education to replace any equipment and supplies I borrowed. Prison Arts provided some drawing supplies - charcoal, pastel and sundry tempera paints - and the institution had a supply of assorted materials. As with the operation of any art course, various items had to be purchased 'on the fly'; I kept all receipts and Prison Arts kindly reimbursed me for those incidentals as well. Books, slides, slide projectors and videotapes had to be moved into and out of the site each evening. Most of these came from the U.B.C. library and the Audio-Visual Centre at the Faculty of Education. Magically, everything came back without a single theft or loss. 66 The need for a vehicle at my disposal meant having to approach the same few friends I knew who had cars, and were willing to give them up from between 4:00 and 10:00 p.m. or later, either of two evenings a week. Transportation became such an ongoing uncertainty, and taxed the patience of one friend so much, that I was compelled to purchase an old vehicle, a 1984 Plymouth Reliant. The drive to the prison meant heading into rush hour traffic, which caused the delays early on in the course, as I had not anticipated the extra time required for the journey, typically one and a half hours to travel 60 kilometres. One evening I had to cancel a class for lack of a vehicle. On those days I did arrive on time, I would be stressed by the pressure of time, or having all the materials I needed at my disposal. Neil's reproach over my tardiness impressed upon me the importance of being punctual, even if I was only a volunteer staff. From other prison teaching and reading, I was aware of the importance of change in routine and its adverse effect on prisoner morale. Some of this is deliberate, intended to keep the prisoners at a manageable level of uncertainty. Otherwise there seems no rational purpose in the capricious alterations of schedules on the part of the administration. My course was offered during the prisoners' leisure-time: relatively unstructured, compared with daily programs. I was soon made to realize the importance of these apparently casual hours. Conflicting Roles: Researcher versus Teacher From the outset I wished to be open about the purpose of my offering the art course free to the inmates at this medium security institution. Describing my intentions on my first day there, I told them clearly what it was I was hoping to find from them, and what they could expect from me, with a brief synopsis of the course. This synopsis I handed out to the men who came to try the introductory 'potato print' class. Again, at the end of the second regular class, I explained to the men - most of whom were new - what kind of research I intended to conduct. I read aloud from the consent form, clarifying any unfamiliar concepts or unclear passages. I explained what ethnographic research was, what 67 it was not, and told them that as members of an all-male society in confinement, they constituted a kind of culture. The men seemed to listen to all this intently: perhaps this was the first time they had thought of their existence as prisoners in any remotely positive way. Neil asked me whether I intended to publish the results in a book. I told him I was considering submitting an article from this in a journal such as Art Education, a copy of which, fortunately, I had brought with me that evening, and which I showed him. I gathered he was concerned about confidentiality; I took care to ensure them of my discretion in that regard. There seemed a desire on his part to discover my true, hidden intention: this question resurfaced throughout the duration of the course, refusing to die no matter what assurances I offered. The suspicion was that I was not who I appeared to be, that under the guise of art education I was conducting psychological profiles, which I intended to release to the authorities. There was some reason for the men's quasi-paranoia: Before my arrival, a researcher from U.B.C. had devised psychological questionnaires which he administered to several inmates at this institution. The results were used to determine those inmates who demonstrated potential psychopathic tendencies. These men were then 'encouraged' to submit to specific rehabilitative programs. I was happy to offer the copy of Art Education as tangible proof of my professional background: even the concept of therapy was one I had no active interest in exploring. Nonetheless, the inmates live under constant siege of surveillance and psychological testing. Neil asked me what would happen should staff get their hands on interview tapes or any notes I had taken of my time in here. I told him in that case I would destroy the documents. One or two of the inmates took time to return their consent forms and the interest/experience questionnaires I had passed out. The other members of the class were invited to remain, as was indicated on the consent form. As added incentive to the volunteer participants, I offered free sketchbooks, hoping they would use them on a day-68 to-day basis as sketch diaries, which I could then examine as further data. Satyajit was quick to point out the hidden cost, of permission to examine them, attached to the books. The men filled out their consent forms with an air of resignation, as if this were yet one more piece of evidence that might be used against them. Satyajit asked me who else would be interviewing them. I misunderstood him, thinking he had asked who the other person would be, in the classroom, when I was interviewing them one-on-one. I told him, Louise Howard, the colleague from my department who had promised to teach a session in papermaking. My answer only alarmed him further. On the consent form, I had asked for two occasions to interview the men. Satyajit had understood this passage as two people: hence the confusion. It took a few minutes to clarify the misunderstanding. Neil's suspicion of my research intentions reached its apogee when he interrogated me on that last evening of classes. He accused me of trying to 'put one over' on the men. I confessed that I too found the entire procedure a little artificial: having set up the parameters, I had in effect a 'captive audience'. I allowed how I would have preferred to come in during regular art classes, but that no institution in the lower mainland had any such course operating in a systematic, long-term way. Certainly there was nothing like the eastern Ontario medium security institution where I had taught the two previous summers. There, because of the province's different secondary school completion requirements, prisoners must amass a certain number of credits toward their graduation diploma. One of these credits may be in visual art. In British Columbia, inmates work on a general secondary school equivalency program to attain their diplomas. Specific credits are not assigned or completed in a cumulative way. So, I told Neil, this little construction of mine would have to stand in. When I repeated my 'hypothesis' to Neil and Sean, they appeared intrigued by my search for evidence of how inmates in incarceral settings experience time. Neil suggested I go 'under cover', and stay on the premises a few days, posing as an inmate. I admitted I 69 would be afraid for my personal safety, and besides, the deception would pose a serious breach of research ethics. Neil's assurance that, of the over 350 inmates in this institution, fewer than half were serving time for violent crimes, gave me little comfort. Security and Space In this section issues pursuant to institutional policy are covered. I claim no insider knowledge with regard to general correctional policy. Indeed, what policies I could surmise from one institution, with respect to security, seldom matched those of another. The issues surrounding space include both those I was permitted and those I was denied, for the purpose of implementing the art course. Logistical problems and staff maneuvers are treated more fully in the following two sections; here I concentrate on physical descriptions of those areas. My treatment of security clearance issues as a separate section concerns itself mainly with the ways in which the institution's policies effected access of volunteers, materials and supplies, and information and surveillance. Volunteer Access One of the earliest items of confusion came about in my first week at the institution when Mr. Hyde took responsibility for my security orientation. This duty is normally carried out by Alicia, but for reasons unknown, Mr. Hyde assumed the job. On my second visit to the institution, when I arrived to teach the mini-art lesson that afternoon, he offered me a seat adjacent to his and Freida's desks in the Program Office, handing me a large folio of reading material concerning security and the history of Canada Corrections. Freida had me fill out an application for an 'enhanced security check' - required of anyone applying to volunteer in a correctional facility in Canada. This document, a two page questionnaire, contains a list of straightforward statements beside which are two columns, 'yes' and 'no'. Following Freida's instructions, I checked off the appropriate box beside each question. 70 The application was then sent to Ottawa, and returned 'incomplete', a week later: they required one's initials in the spaces I had marked with a check. The oversight set back my plans by another week The volume of literature Mr. Hyde laid before me posed a challenge to get through in the two hours that Alicia had advised me to set aside. Nonetheless, the material had to be read, if not wholly understood, before I could sign a form stating that I had been briefed as to internal security procedures and protocol. I read a thick document called the Volunteer Orientation Manual, in addition to a small booklet with statistics about Canada's justice system and incarceration history, and watched three videotapes (a total running time of about one hour). The first video, produced in the United States, and featuring what appeared to be real inmates and security personnel, (It was filmed at San Quentin and Soledad Prisons in the 1970s) dealt with some of the set-ups, or ways that prisoners will attempt to coerce or manipulate staff. The second, produced locally, was targeted at the close friends and relatives of prisoners, and took a hard view of visitors caught bringing any form of contraband into an institution. The third was a slick piece of propaganda produced by the Department of the Solicitor General. Titled "A Different Perspective: The Mission of the Correctional Service of Canada" (1989), it outlined five core 'values': 1): The rights and dignities of individuals; 2): The law-abiding potential of offenders; 3): the importance of professional staff; 4): the sharing of ideas and knowledge; and 5): the importance of operating with openness and integrity in a democratic society. My impression of this institution was that it made no effort to live up to the last two of the noble objectives of Canada Corrections. Mr. Hyde also lent me a bright yellow book, entitled Games Criminals Play, to take home and read at my leisure. Written by a former guard and published by Canada Corrections, on its cover was a crude drawing of a prison guard dangling on strings like a marionette, while a much larger man, dressed like a convict, held the controls. Mr. Hyde 71 told me the book was an important introduction to the various set-ups and other ways inmates attempt to manipulate new staff and volunteers. I felt ambivalent about reading the book, imagining it took a hard line with convicts. Still it was my intention to scan its contents. Before I could do so, Mr. Hyde asked me to return it. My session at the Program Office consumed the entire morning and threatened to eat into the afternoon as well. Only when I asked Freida whether I would have a chance to teach my mini-lesson, did she intervene and send me over to the school. When I asked Mr. Hyde about the wide disparity between the time required for his orientation and Alicia's, his answer was, he had a more thorough security package, one which demanded an entire day to get through. The difference seemed to be a matter of personal preference, rather than set policy. The end result was the same: I had the privilege of wearing a pink ' V pass, which meant that I could walk and teach unaccompanied within the compound. A yellow pass requires a security escort at all times. In spite of the level of access I was granted, initially I found Susan kept a close watch over me, perhaps more for my protection than due to any suspicion of my intentions. For the first two classes, she remained in a classroom adjacent to the P.O.V.. Each night after that, the length of her presence in the P.O.V. area diminished until she would allow me to wander down at the beginning of each class and leave me alone with the inmates the entire time, making her appearance only at the end, to let me know it was time to pack up. Most evenings, Susan would be called up from the front gate, to meet me and escort me over to the hobbyshop in the Social Development wing. To get there, one has to pass the front desk, go through a metal detector, where another guard will sweep a metal-detection baton over one, before they open an electric fence. Passing through this gate will gain one entry to the Visitor Control area, a sort of middle ground in terms of security, as prisoners are released unaccompanied into this area when they have visitors. Beyond this section, before entry to the cell blocks and Social Development wing, another formidable 72 gate must be passed through. On either end of this second gate are electrically secured doors, with a glassed-in guard station, known as a 'bubble', in between. Here Susan would pick up the keys required to open the P.O.V.: one regular 'Yale' type key, several small, flat keys for turning lights on and off, and a large, heavy brass key, perhaps six inches by three inches, to secure the door of the P.O.V.. She also would obtain an emergency personal paging device, or P.P.D.. Somewhat larger than a regular pager, it is used to alert guards in case of an attempted hostage taking, or other threatening incident. The pager is connected to a panel in the bubble, and electronically matched to a particular room. On rare occasions I was left to pick up these items on my own. Another panel in the bubble showed several video monitors linked to areas within the cell units: Foucaults' (1979) Panopticon redesigned for the 1990's. I wondered what might happen, should I be assailed at some moment outside the P.O.V. area. The front gate presented inconsistent levels of scrutiny, depending on the personal whim of the guard on duty on a given evening. While a man in the bubble checked a list of staff or special visitors, another guard, male or female, would look through the materials I was bringing inside. The outside guard generally would have a more personable manner, although one female guard would look through my possessions with a hawk's eye, carefully noting all items on my return. One evening I encountered some difficulty with my usual easy access. Apparently the official document stating my intent and the duration of the course, which had to be posted inside the bubble, had been mislaid. The outside guard, an older man, made a very cursory check of my materials and told the guard inside the bubble, a much younger, burly man, to let me on through. The inside guard was not about to let me through for, try as he might, he could not find the pass sheet anywhere. The older guard got visibly angry, verbally abusing the younger one, who insisted on producing the letter of permission before he would grant me access. He telephoned Susan, who had to come to the gate to allow me through: evidently she had more authority than the older guard. Susan promised 73 him she would obtain another copy of the pass sheet, which I noticed was in place when I left that evening. My interactions with the front guards comprised some of my most pleasant exchanges with staff. One evening I noticed an outside guard glancing at the book Games Criminals Play. I told him what it was about and asked him whether he had read it. He answered no, that as part of their regular training, security staff get an intensive exposure to types of set-ups that some inmates will attempt on staff. He added, he thought the book should be a lot larger. Canada Corrections' policy toward security would appear to be administered internally, allowing a variety of strictness with respect to volunteer clearances. My problems with obtaining clearance for Louise Howard, a papermaker, appeared all the more unreasonable when she told me that, due to the interest Prison Arts showed toward her upcoming placement at this institution, she was assigned to do a workshop at the local women's correctional facility in advance of the return of her security check. Her application with the men's institution was returned, like mine, with an 'incomplete' designation: She had put an initial in place of her first name (one she never used) and a bureaucrat at Regional Headquarters wanted to know what it was. My clearance with the eastern Ontario institution required no red tape: Having been hired as a teacher through the facility's educational service may have had some bearing in that situation. Although the policy of Canada Corrections clearly states, on its application for volunteer and contract worker clearance, that a criminal record does not necessarily deny one access, this condition would be considered grounds for refusal in all but the most exceptional cases. Applicants with Prison Arts are asked this question, and are screened for that reason. Minimum security institutions have a more lenient policy in this respect. At any institution, the major hindrance to security clearance is a record of drug trafficking. 74 Materials and Supplies My second entry into the facility took nearly 45 minutes at the front gate, as I had not been assigned a regular security pass, a page-long document describing the nature of the course I would be teaching and for how long. I was carrying some questionable items, the greatest security concern being a class set of X-acto knives, and enough potatoes and yams for each inmate student to make an illicit distillery. The X-acto knives fell within the institution's one inch allowance for blades. Other cutting implements, such as scissors with blades up to three and a half inches, were permitted. Generally, I was impressed with the range of supplies that are permitted (see Appendix VI). For unusual equipment and supplies, special approval could be arranged through the Hobbyshop Officer. A letter of request is sent to Regional H.Q.; the turnaround time can be up to two weeks. This policy applies to materials used in the inmates' cells as well. Not everything is permitted: beside the suspect food items, explosives, glass and diamond wire (used to file through metal) are prohibited. A surprise to me, Frank told me solvents and flammable liquids are not restricted. An inmate is allowed two hobbies in his cell, and two in the hobbyshop. Unlike the eastern Ontario facility, for example, clay was allowed. When I ordered clay for the summer art course back east, the principal gave his blanket approval. At that facility, unlike the one in the Lower Mainland, guards would visit the art classroom twice each day: morning and afternoon. One unhappy day, they demanded I remove the clay. The principal told me that clay was deemed a security risk as it could be used to make impressions of keys. How and why inmates were given access to keys, he would not say. As with volunteer security, each correctional facility is given a wide margin of discretion when it comes to permitting materials. Nearly as arbitrarily-dispensed is the way the front guards will search through one's belongings. The female guards I encountered were more careful in their scrutiny than 75 the males, but I could not generalize, based on my experiences. One woman took extreme care in counting out the set of gouges I had brought for linocut printing. She told me they could not be left at the facility, and that inmates were not permitted them in their cells. One exception to this rule was Rick, who had a larger woodcarving set of his own. One's own level of tolerance will also determine the type and number of tools that one might bring into the facility and use with complete ease. Again, the eastern Ontario institution had a 'no blades' policy, which impaired the delivery of one session I wished to teach: cardboard construction. For this activity, a carpet knife is required to cut the cardboard shapes. I smuggled one in, in the interest of artistic freedom, assuring myself and the class that only I would use it: I precut a variety of standardized shapes, and told the men if they wished to have a cardboard piece cut further, they would have to come to me. That policy lasted about half a day. As I trusted them with the knife, I felt comfortable allowing them to pass it around, and braced myself for any vexation from staff. At the Lower Mainland institution, instead of pushing the limit on materials, I stopped well behind it: for the enlargement exercise, I opted to bring push pins, instead of the more precise and manageable biological probes, for the inmates to trace a gridiron on to their sheets of mylar. Information and Surveillance There were few but noticeable incidents when the feeling of being watched by an anonymous system made itself present. The most obvious example was the space I was assigned for the course, the Program Office Vestibule. Mr. Sandstone was open about his purpose in having the course where it was: the area had video surveillance. Given the tense atmosphere of a medium-security institution, any evidence of electronic supervision should come as no surprise. Additional observation, in the form of staff designated to the area, seemed like an unnecessary caution. My protestations had no effect, despite my oft-repeated claim that I had taught in a medium-security institution before. Susan was 76 dispatched to the area until, in her estimation, I was able to handle the class alone. When she drew my attention to the noise from the overhead fan I wondered, at first, whether she was bothered by its interfering with her ability to hear us. The sensation occurred to me that there was an endless loop of watching and observing going on: here was I, researching through observation of the inmates. They in turn were watching me, looking for any weak spots or hidden agendas; meanwhile we both were being observed by guards somewhere via the video camera. And Susan was observing us as well. By simply repositioning myself, joining Susan, I crossed an invisible boundary of 'observee' (by Susan) to observer (Susan and Graeme: inmates). Meanwhile we (Susan and I) were also observees, by both the inmates and the camera. I brought up this issue of surveillance with the inmates one evening, when I distributed copies of an article by Michael Piazza (1996) from the alternative culture magazine White Walls. I asked them whether they thought the video monitors could pick up sound. As inmates would have already ascertained this feature, I knew the question was rhetorical. Nobody said anything. My intention was to invite their trust, to demonstrate that I was unequivocally on their side. I told them that whatever we said within the P.O.V. was confidential. I was not about to run to the guards, or Susan, with the information they gave me. The exception, I told them, was anything that threatened security. Passing around the large article, which included several illustrations whose size I wished to keep intact, I attempted to draw parallels with their situation. The article documented an art exhibition, curated by the author, within the walls of a youth detention centre in Chicago. The multimedia show drew on the residents' experience and attitudes of being incarcerated. One exhibit, titled 'Surveillance/Surveilled, or Andy In/Andy Out', concerned a former resident of the centre, Derrick H., who had made a videotape of the building's exterior upon his release. My effort at inspiring a politically based art form that challenged the safety of their regular imagery and realistic 77 style, was perhaps too abstract. The inmates dutifully took the articles away, and that was the last I saw or heard of them. Space The Program Office Vestibule where my course was allocated gave no sense of intimacy or containment. Being a vestibule, it was literally a thoroughfare to other areas: the main office at one end, classrooms and washrooms along both sides, a custodial closet with open grating looking out to the compound beyond. The ceiling was two stories high, with a mezzanine and gallery overlooking the area from above. From the ceiling hung a large fan and the ubiquitous fluorescent tubes. A loud, intrusive hum came from the central air unit, which could not be turned off. That, combined with the flat, hard surfaces, rendered the acoustics abysmal: Video players became audibly useless at any level. Even with seating close enough that one could almost touch the monitor, the reverberation made listening an ordeal. Given the choice of P.O.V. or nothing, I had to humanize it, as much as possible. I would circumscribe the cavernous area by pulling the side tables into a comfortable horseshoe arrangement, with seats placed along the outside edge. This left an open area of about two metres square, inside the horseshoe, in which I could stand and talk, set up a video monitor or screen for viewing slides, or pull up another table to use for still life arrangements. There was no question of being allowed to install any short-term displays, to tell the rest of the institution, "Here we are." My view, that communication of one's art to an audience, no matter how restricted, is the final, linking stage of a process, had no currency here. The exercises we were doing would remain just that. The other consideration, storage, had no available solution. Limited space in the hobbyshop closet was taken up with other supplies. The prospect of taking finished works back to their cells was limited by the inmates' extremely confined personal space. A cell of roughly two meters squared will soon be taken over by art supplies, never mind finished work, as Rick pointed out to 78 me. He told me his cell in Saskatchewan was even more crammed than his cell here, with all his art supplies stuffed under his bed. My first choice, the room known as 'Social D.', had a slightly ramshackle, forgotten appearance, a variety of textures and variegated surfaces, including a sloping ceiling, a faux skylight (it actually housed a fluorescent fixture), cupboards, wood paneling, even a dais on the floor. Alongside two walls were stacks of institutional tables. One wall had thin, ersatz stained-glass windows, with stacks of cinder blocks in decorative fan-shapes, which allowed some light penetration. This was a prison, after all. The space resembled an abandoned chapel. Most important, it had a sense of containment, and removal from the panoptic surveillance system. It was approached from a corridor which branched off the hall outside the hobbyshop, then through a set of wooden doors. Washrooms and a small windowed office extended off either side of this corridor. By the time Susan offered me the space, my art course was foundering. This was my last full evening, when Abe finished his linoprint and Sean and Neil came in to interrogate me. In other respects, this institution housed a considerable array of art and hobby equipment: two large kilns, several workbenches, two potter's wheels, and a separate and completely-equipped woodworking area. The ongoing nature of the inmates' other hobbies, chiefly stained glass, prohibited my entry to the hobbyshop, except to access the etching press. The inmates' work was left in careful arrangement on their benches. And those who were at work in the area would keep a watchful eye over their mates' projects. As Gary Wyatt confirmed, one's ideal studio area does not exist in any institution. Art teachers worth their pay are adept at improvising whatever area they are assigned in which to conduct their program. The irony was that here was a nearly perfect space, unusable, for reasons that in my hubris I considered secondary to the more important cause of program delivery. 79 Staff Resistance This section addresses any unsuccessful aspects of interaction with staff: breakdowns in communication, resistance to requests for alternative space and scheduling, and other impressions I had of bad faith. Problems arose chiefly with administrative staff, who, between Programs and Social Development, typically would shuffle off my entreaties with bureaucratic finesse. Other researchers, teachers and art therapists working in prisons have described the bureaucratic side-stepping that characterizes administrative attitudes to rehabilitative and educational programs there. Goldin and Thomas (1984) found that adult education programs may be more symbolic than substantive. Tentative or newly formed programs are threatened by administrative subversion; conflicts between administrators and teachers create slippages that can undermine self-directed learning. Knights (1989), summarizing Foucault (1979) and Quebec educator Lucien Morin (in Knights, 1989), traces the particular ethos of bureaucracies, how they have developed according to the dominant capitalist social structure, and how this system operates to inhibit significant effects from rehabilitative programs in favour of maintaining the social status quo. This 'business-as-usual' attitude manifests itself in the greater value given to security, over rehabilitation, in prisons. Working in Bedford Prison, England, Edwards (1994) located the problem of impaired programs with the scant communication between the different agencies working in prisons, and prison administration. Evidence of agreement or common direction was rare, and seldom were prisoners included in decisions. Clearly, prison security and programs constitute two discreet streams of management, each with its own agenda and operating budget. Less clear, but highly suggestive, is the greater importance assigned to security, or safe containment, within the prison structure. The following incidents are offered as evidence of the symbolic, as opposed to substantive, support for my research which the administrators and support staff of this institution demonstrated. 80 Access and Orientation Between the time my letter of request was dispersed throughout the correctional network in the lower mainland, and I received contact from the first and only institution, over a month had passed. Tanya, the hobbycraft officer there, expressed an interest in hosting my art course; she told me to contact their Program Director in order to set up a time for me to begin. I called Mr. Hyde and left a message with his secretary to contact me. After nearly six weeks of unreturned messages, I began to doubt the viability of this institution as host, and considered returning to the eastern Ontario prison where I had taught the Pilot Study art course the previous summer, to conduct my research. At that point the Program Director returned my call. We decided on a date for me to visit, fortunately within that week. The first day I visited, Mr. Hyde was not available, but his assistant Freida introduced me to the new, interim hobbyshop officer, named Gus. Tanya had left the position - one she had held for over two years - to assume another within the institution. Mobility of staff within an institution is frequent: Ascending levels of power, in prison management, present themselves regularly. Gus escorted me throughout the institution, introducing me to several staff. The tour took us most of the working day. I met with the Assistant Warden, in charge of programs, who gave me her official endorsement. Gus brought me inside a "bubble", the thick-glassed corner office at the juncture of two cell blocks, or wherever a security gate is located. Between these privileges and the free lunch, I felt I had been given the V.I.P. treatment. I thanked Gus profusely when he returned me to the Program Office. From there Freida and I arranged a date for me to return for security clearance and orientation. I also asked to offer a 'demo' class, in potato printmaking, as a way of generating interest in the course. This did not seem to present a problem: the orientation typically required about two to three hours; the afternoon we selected, a Friday, would be ideal to offer the art course, as regular classes were fairly loose and attendance was optional on the last afternoon of the week. 81 In retrospect, my return visit that Friday likely did not leave Mr. Hyde with a positive impression. That morning, I interrupted him several times, asking for clarification of passages: Given the context of a certain passage, was the word goal the incorrect spelling of gaol? He agreed it was, appearing somewhat distratced. Were inmates held in segregation still denied all personal items, including T.V.s? Mr. Hyde said he would have to check on the latter item. Some time later, he returned with an answer, no. The document he had given me, written in the mid-1980s, needed updating. At this point, he made no effort to conceal his agitation and embarrassment. Renegotiated Space Although Tanya had left the hobbyshop management, she attended my first evening class. Her presence was invaluable, as we were doing gesture and contour exercises, a difficult class in which to involve students, especially adult males, as it requires every student to act as model by striking short poses while the others make rapid gesture drawings. Tanya's enthusiasm helped the men overcome their.inhibitions. My late arrival that evening put me in a poor position to complain, but I did, when I saw where the art class was to be held. Without warning, somebody had overruled my choice of space, and put us in the Program Office Vestibule, or P.O.V.. The unexpected change shocked me. On the day Gus had escorted me around, I had met with Alicia, the woman in charge of allocating spaces for inmate clubs and groups. Her department is known as Social Development, and concerns itself with any non-program, or leisure-time activities. With her I had selected the room known as 'Social D.', located across the hall and down about 20 metres from the hobbyshop. I chose those evenings the room was available to teach the art class. Tanya told me it was reserved for Native programs. When I expressed my dismay with Tanya, she told me I would have to take it up with Mr. Hyde. The next morning I phoned him. He told me the matter was out of his hands, and referred me to Mr. Sandstone, the Director of Social Development. This man 82 sounded mystified that I should find the P.O.V. less than ideal. His main rationale for the switch was that this area had video surveillance. I told him I had worked previously in a medium security institution, one that was, if anything, more dangerous than this one, and in a room without video monitors. In a calm but strained voice I outlined several reasons for my dissatisfaction. I mentioned the lack of adequate storage, and the sterility of the space. Mr. Sandstone heard me out, then said, "I'll see what I can do." A follow-up call two days later connected me with Gus: Mr. Sandstone was "not available at the moment". Gus told me the space had not been changed, and assured me that, in spite of my protestations, the matter had been taken "to the highest level"; I would simply have to accept whatever space they saw fit to assign me. When I started to protest, Gus asked me if he could speak to me "on the level." He proceeded to say the staff and inmates did not like my personality; they found me arrogant, and acting as though I were doing everybody a big favour by offering the course. I asked him whether the inmates felt this way about me as well. Gus clarified, but added that they were bothered by my late arrival on the first evening. I listened, chastened. Gus advised me to simply "play along by the rules," and once I proved myself by the strength of the program, I would eventually "have the power" to demand more privileges. I thanked him for the advice and hung up. This antipathy of which Gus enlightened me was to cast a pall over my relations with the staff for the duration of the course. Security Clearances Some weeks into the course, I prepared to have Louise Howard, a papermaker, cleared for security. This meant approaching Alicia who, as Social Development Co-ordinator, also gave volunteer staff their orientations. After two calls through the institution's switchboard, who told me she was not in her office, I discovered Alicia was not expected in for the entire week. A call to Mr. Hyde's office brought me the now familiar refrain that the matter was "out of his hands." 83 Meanwhile, Gus had moved up the institution stream, into Case Management. His replacement, Susan, was a law student with work experience at that institution as security guard, and was acting as temporary fill-in for the summer. She told me that the institution could not do Louise's orientation until her security application was cleared from Ottawa. How odd - they had managed to do so for me. Susan said I would have to get Louise's completed application back to her first; she would then send it to Regional Headquarters with a priority request. Thus another week was needed before Louise could even set foot inside the institution. My understanding was that she had to sign the enhanced security clearance in person, at the site: that is what Mr. Hyde had demanded of me. I asked Susan why she did not let me know of this a month before: I could have returned with Louise's signature long before this time. Susan's reply was that Alicia had already informed me of all of this. If Alicia had told me of this protocol, it would have had to have been the only time I spoke to her at any length, on my first day of orientation - before my security clearance was even sent away! I could not fault Susan for the misinformation, as deliberate as it seemed. Application delivered, I contacted Alicia to determine when Louise might be allowed to meet with her for her orientation. Alicia informed me that she had nothing to do with Louise's security clearance, nor with the operation of the hobbyshop as such. Her feeling was that it would take more than a week for Louise's clearance to return. Program Scheduling and Enrollment Well into the summer, fewer and fewer men were showing up to class. Susan suggested my art course might recoup some of its declining enrollment if I were to offer classes on Saturdays, for five to six hours. On weekends, the inmates found themselves with more free time on their hands than during weekday evenings. I considered her suggestion, and added that it might be advantageous to the inmates, to start and finish a unit on the same day: they had demonstrated little carry-over, from one evening's class to 84 the next; the projects we started were often abandoned or resumed with desultory energy. Several times an inmate had to miss a follow-up class for the purpose of attending some other function, or meeting visitors. This way, if an inmate had no interest in a unit such as papermaking, he could simply forego the class, waiting until another day's unit appealed to him. The oil painting class that the itinerant painting teacher offered every few months at the institution was always well-attended. Part of her classes' success owed, I believe, to the immediate gratification of being introduced to a project, practicing it, and seeing its completion, all on the same day. The reduced competition for programs on weekends would mean less demand for certain spaces as well. Finally, the revised schedule would reduce my number of trips out to the institution by half. Considering all these advantages, I accepted her suggestion, telling her the following evening, I would like to change to Saturdays that week, if possible. Susan told me that would be highly unlikely: as a summer staff person, her wage was pre-set, and her hours, while they changed from day to day, were confined to weekdays. Bringing her on site on a weekend would entail additional wages, at time-and-a-half. I hastened to agree that would not work, reiterating my promise that my course would not cost the institution anything. Susan made no reference to the fact that the idea was her suggestion in the first place. Neither did I remind her, or question how the woman managed to teach the oil painting course on weekends. Tanya used to attend these sessions: I had noticed one of her efforts from that course hanging in the hobbyshop. But Tanya was on a salary, and, from my impression and the inmates' testimony, had been unusually devoted to her job. I had the impression, largely unprovable, that certain decisions regarding the status and fate of my course were being made, between Mr. Sandstone, Susan, Alicia and Mr. Hyde. Susan's role in this shadow play appeared to be one of appeasing me, giving the appearance of help, while acting on the decisions of Mr. Sandstone et al, who presumably wished to remain behind a veil of bureaucratic secrecy. Seldom could I reach them on the 85 telephone, and if by chance I did, the familiar line was "It's out of my hands." Between them the fate of my course and my research was being determined, yet nobody wanted to admit responsibility. My worst suspicions were confirmed when, on what became my last evening there, Susan delivered the shock announcement. Her news came out in small increments. She met me at the front gate in the usual way, we cleared the security posts and headed to the hobbyshop. On the way over Susan told me not to expect many men to show up that evening. The likelihood was that it would be my last evening at the institution. The full impact of what she told me did not register: I still hoped that we could work out a Saturday schedule. I set out the materials for a class in watercolour, and we waited about 20 minutes. Presently Jabhar arrived. As I began telling him what we were doing, Susan told him there would be no class that evening. One fellow who had not been attending the art course, but expressed an interest in pottery, came by. I told him I was planning to do pottery the next Saturday; this Saturday I had set aside for Louise to teach her papermaking unit. At that point Susan laid bare the institution's policy regarding extra pay for Saturday staff. Finally she made herself clear: Mr. Sandstone had decided to cancel the art course immediately. I asked to speak with Mr. Sandstone, who happened to be in the area, preparing to take part in a Native ceremony known as a 'Wee-pee'. As he advanced to the ceremony site (the room known as 'Social D.'), I introduced myself with what I considered a cordial yet serious demeanor. He said, "We've met," with obvious disdain. When I asked when, he answered, "On the phone." He told me that the art course was being canceled due to declining enrollment. I asked whether Louise, who had only then received security clearance, would still be allowed to come out that weekend. He said no, the activity would probably be well-attended, but for the wrong reasons, because Louise was a young woman. I pointed out that at 50, Louise could hardly be called young. Mr. Sandstone was resolute, speaking without a hint of apology. His attitude toward me was suspicious, more 86 suited to an unwanted intruder than an invited guest. His argument bespoke a lack of awareness of the positive influence of women instructors in prisons (Boyle, 1977; Carrel & Laing, 1982; Szekely, 1984). When asked whether I might return to interview those inmates who had volunteered, he allowed that would be possible in the Visitor Control Area. In short, my access to the unit was henceforth denied. He added that he saw no useful purpose to the research I was conducting. A Native woman was urging Mr. Sandstone to come along; the ceremony was about to begin. Back in the hobbyshop office I continued my discussion with Susan, accusing Mr. Sandstone of undermining my course from the beginning by assigning me to the P.O.V.. Susan said that there was no way they would allow me into the room known as Social D., as that was restricted. If so, I wondered, why had Alicia promised it to me on my first day there? Susan admitted Mr. Sandstone had been in favor of canceling my art program all along. She said the administration perceived me as a threat, a potential carrier of contraband because, as a volunteer, I had nothing to lose. I wondered whether her remark was a veiled reference to my having given a banana each to two inmates, a few weeks earlier, to 'bribe' them into helping me clean up after a still life painting session. Knowing bananas can bemused to make stills, I had stressed that they had to eat them there. Once the offending bananas were handed over, the inmates pocketed them and bolted for the door; I realized my error in judgment: Jabhar insisted that taking fruit from the kitchen happened all the time; to be caught with a banana would be considered a minor offense. My hunch was that if they were stopped and asked, my name would have escaped their lips like gas under pressure. Susan urged me to gather my supplies, many of which were mixed with those of the hobbyshop, and be on my way. She and Frank, the inmate hobbyshop manager, helped me out with my gear, Susan accompanying me as far as my car. At that point I gave vent to my feelings of frustration and indignation. Neither supporting nor arguing with me, 87 Susan heard me out; by this time she had revealed, in spite of her typical diplomacy, where her true allegiance lay. She suggested I write a letter to Mr. Hyde, the man responsible for approving my access to the institution in the first place. During a phone call to Gary Wyatt of Prison Arts Foundation, Gary assured me that I had done nothing untoward, that this kind of outcome with prison placements was not uncommon, and that I should not take it personally. He added that the particular institution I had been assigned to had a history of internal politics that impaired educational interventions by outsiders, an item of hearsay substantiated by two former employees of that institution. Later, in interview, Gary outlined a number of reasons why an art course can run aground in a prison. A negative experience with a previous art/s instructor can leave a lasting impression. Two of the hobbyshop officers that I dealt with came from a position of security. Gary said: So some people crossing over from guard into arts and crafts bring a whole different mindset. They actually don't believe that maybe [inmates] deserve what it is you're offering them. And they don't see it as something that they truly in their hearts support. Gary's partner, Marian Otterstrom, allowed that it has taken a long time for Prison Arts to gain the trust and respect of many arts and crafts officers, who initially were quite suspicious. The rapid turnover in arts and crafts officers within a given institution can also damage any inroads into private, below-the-surface operations. The institution where I was assigned witnessed a changeover of four arts and crafts officers during my brief tenure. Marian added that communication between prison staff and volunteers, and from one department to another in the same prison, is not always very good. Such things as advertising a program may not be handled very well, which can in turn affect attendance. I have deliberately avoided discussion of security guards within this section. On the whole, they acted in a professional, non-obstructing manner. Indeed, their cooperation and show of interest in what I was doing was a refreshing change from the officious manner in which many of the front gate guards at the eastern Ontario institution treated me. 88 Inmate Resistance Of a different kind from that of staff, the inmates' resistance was ongoing, and manifested itself in the form of unwillingness to experiment with certain art mediums, as well as a general suspicion with my real purposes in the institution. Some of these concerns have been discussed in the first section of this chapter, "Researcher/Teacher Dilemmas". A fear of psychoanalysis of the inmates, through their comments and their art work, seemed to permeate their interactions with me. Overall, with occasional exceptions, their comments were guarded. Perhaps due a tradition of verbal abuse, from other inmates, guards or their upbringing, at times they reacted to remarks I made as though they were intended slights. Where past experience and values might have created any blockage to the kinds of discussion and outcomes I had hoped for, I deal with these situations more completely in the section, "Inmates' World." Naturally, some overlapping is inevitable. Inmate Indifference By crediting a failure of my instructional strategies to excite the inmates' attention to the inmates themselves, the inference is that I am assigning the onus of responsibility to the inmates. The reality is, it was a shared responsibly. Whatever mismatches occurred did so because of a lack of awareness on my part of the needs and interests of the inmates. Thus to speak of indifference in this subsection is not to lay blame at anyone's feet, but to explore reasons for these mismatches. Only this way can such mistakes in judgment be circumvented in future art instructions in prisons. Early evidence of a mismatch presented itself during the introductory potato print session. My selection of this process was guided by its economy, a hoped-for familiarity, relative ease of execution and fairly high level of success: one can achieve satisfactory results without having to rely on exceptional drawing skills. I replaced potatoes with yams for their firmer, woody texture: they will allow more subtle detail in the carving, and stand up to a longer run of prints than potatoes. 89 As I discovered, a highly successful outcome is no guarantee of interest on an inmate's part. Neil, the most contrary of the inmates in my class, finished his printing early. He had carved a sunset, using the ovoid shape of the yam's surface effectively in his design. One of the sun's rays was lopped off during the carving stage. He tried to correct the error by brushing in the area where the sunbeam should have been. This attempt at compensation is typical of novice printmakers: guided by an unreasonable perfectionism, and unfamiliar with the unique character of the print process, their efforts stand out more than if they were to leave the area blank, and instead make provisions for it through reworking the design. I said nothing, allowing Neil to try to overcome his frustration on his own. He showed no interest in trying another color, or altering his composition, or attempting another design. Instead he disparaged the process, calling it childish. The more sophisticated technique, linoleum printing, elicited similar indifference. As with many of the lessons, this one was spread over two evening classes. On the first class, Neil, Sean, Rick, Jabhar and a new student, Abe, joined in. I introduced the general medium of printmaking, by showing the class several different types: woodcuts by Durer, Piranesi's series of prison etchings, Japanese wood/serigraphy prints, and the lithographs and woodcuts of Kathe Kollwitz. These last were, I felt, closest to the possibilities inherent in linocutting; as well, they demonstrated a mastery of light and dark distribution, which I thought the men would recognize as they had been exposed to this element. Neil quickly gave up, proceeding to work on his stained glass in the hobbyshop. After some desultory efforts, Jabhar and Sean followed suit. None of them had a strong image they wished to render on paper. Had they only done that, I would have been able to guide their images through the intricacies of transferring, carving, inking and printing. Sean made the most concerted effort, but a general fatigue or lassitude overcame him, and he left. (Sean had a tendency to fall asleep from time to time, in other classes, especially during video presentations.) Only Rick and Abe remained. On the following evening, only Abe returned. Rick had his 'lifer's' meeting to attend. 90 The other process that received severe criticism was the drawing enlargement technique, in which a gridiron was employed to transfer a photographic image onto paper. In that situation, as mentioned, Doug was so discouraged that he left, never to return. The other inmates, however, submitted willingly to the rigors of this necessary conceptual stage. More obvious inmate indifference presented itself when I attempted to generate discussion, through the showing of videos and slides of artists' work, and raising of theoretical concerns. One successful occasion had to do with the symbolic properties of color. There was ample feedback as to the various symbolic associations with color. Here Colin and Satyajit were most vocal. Other inmates such as Jabhar offered their disputes; in this instance I welcomed the controversy. Neil, in a show of obvious boredom, made an ostentatious and abrupt departure without venturing a comment. Other discussions showed less success in the amount and kind of inmate response: perhaps their lack of experience and vocabulary with criticizing art works inhibited them. Large numbers of slides could be shown with a minimum of commentary. Then again, my selection of pieces may have left them cold. More provocative subject matter was, in retrospect, avoided. One slide, showing a cattle train loaded with Jews being delivered to Auschwitz, by Linda Frimer, was deciphered quickly by Jabhar. His interpretation consisted of the pithy, "Hitler's boys." When I asked for a more specific reading, none came forth, so I explained the location and incident. Jabhar, typically, asseverated, "That's what I said. It doesn't have to be any more specific than that." Jabhar's contradictory stance, here as with other occasions, seemed to be based upon a suspicion that any additional commentary on my part, even to round out his response, constituted an attack. Even well-produced videos, concerning the lives of artists, were received with tepid enthusiasm, except in the odd instance of a student knowing about the work of the artist being presented. This happened once, when I showed a video of the Surrealist movement, and Frank was pleased to watch a section on Salvador Dali that included a shot 91 of his famous work, The Persistence of Memory. When, after an especially lacklustre response to a video, I asked the class whether they found these videos interesting or worthwhile, Neil erupted with a characteristically sarcastic remark of "Oh, very." Part of the problem may have been the annoyingly poor acoustics in the P.O.V. space. The possibility of allowing inmate students to select their own slides from a folder, then present their selection, is worth pursuing with a longer, more formal credit-type art class. As this one was strictly for amusement, any aesthetic and art historical discussions were seen as cutting into the more important studio time. Education and Experience My attempt throughout the duration of this course, as with any art instruction, was to build upon inmates' previous experience. Where that experience is lacking, or forgotten or incomplete, I consider it important to offer a course whereby each exercise continues and expands upon the lessons and skills gained in the previous ones. Without knowing what the inmates already had done, I was compelled to select and streamline a curriculum that I hoped both newcomers and those with previous art experience would find interesting. Anecdotal evidence suggests that students, especially those non-academically-streamed, hold alternative attitudes about the value of building upon previous learning. My finding was that, if an inmate had done a given exercise, regardless of when and at what level, that was sufficient unto itself; further exploration in that area, or its use to other purposes, was irrelevant. Possibly, the want of stimuli in prisons, combined with a general lack of interest or experience in imaginative pursuits, inhibits an inquisitive mind and investigative spirit. Whatever the reason, the typical response to familiar exercises was one of almost reflexive dismissal. One of Neil's justifications for calling the potato print lesson childish may have been that another inmate had remarked that he had done this in grade school. Neil returned to this criticism when, on the last evening of regular classes, he and 92 Sean sat down with me to discuss my art research agenda. He told me he found the exercises beneath his ability, and considered them an insult to his intelligence. He apparently was unaware of how his statement contradicted his earlier point, that the course I taught was beyond the level of most of the inmates. The inmates' tendency was to treat each lesson as a discrete event, with little connection to the previous ones, save where a process had been interrupted by the end of the evening's session. The colour wheels were never used in any systematic way, despite specific lessons in painting, such as the reverse-colour painting, that called on considerable knowledge of colour theory. Neil dismissed with a single remark, the usefulness of viewfinders for selecting objects from a still life to make an effective life-size composition. He told me that they had done this method of viewfinding before. One evening Rick arrived later than usual, and, seeing what the class was doing, said "Oh, we're doing dot paintings, are we?", as if by this show of familiarity, he had some advantage over the rest of the class. A kind of preconception of what constitutes art influenced inmates' attitude toward materials. If a material was not fresh, and purchased from an art supply or craft store, it was suspect. For the unit in collage, I had brought in caning, burlap and other used items. Despite my introduction of the process showing the works of Picasso and Kurt Schwitters, nobody showed any interest in these materials, preferring to use color photographs, and (secondly) the photocopies of Victorian engravings. Sean joked that I was "Bringing the dregs to us in the joint." His remark recalled a telling comment that Don, from the eastern Ontario institution where I had taught the previous summer, had made regarding my using recycled yoghurt containers for water. He thought I was resorting to desperate measures because of the prison's niggardly budgetary allowance for the art course. The concept of using recycled materials in any artistic capacity is largely foreign to prisoners. A notable exception was Frank, the hobbyshop coordinator. He told me that when he is on the 93 outside, one of his favorite pastimes is foraging through garbage dumps in search of material for his sculpture and craft projects. Problems with teaching prisoners any discipline can occur whenever criticism is broached. Many prisoners have had unsuccessful experiences in regular art classes, and feel inadequate as art students; these negative memories will often inhibit the kinds of risk-taking needed in artmaking (Karban, 1994). Some of the most useful advice I received as a teacher in prisons came from the head teacher at the eastern Ontario institution, who told me to concentrate on the work when discussing a student's progress. In this way the inmate student's tendency to take criticism personally is reduced. At the institution this summer I refrained from the usual depth of criticism I might normally mete out, my role as a teacher being compromised by my volunteer status, the voluntary participation of the students, the non-credit status of the course and my other function as researcher. Still, occasions arose when I could not restrain my unsolicited tips. Sean, struggling with the contour drawing of a pepper mill, was one example. I offered assistance, showing him the 'ellipses' method of construction of the cylinder shape, thereby making an easier match between the two sides. He told me defensively he knew it was wrong and that he had not finished. Rather than listen to my suggestion, he seemed to hear only a rebuke, and recoil from it. This same student had earlier indicated a redefinition of his own capabilities as a nascent artist, when he proudly showed me a drawing he had finished between one class and the next. Apparently another inmate in his cell block showed him some tricks with shading. Sean had achieved accuracy with the drawing's contours via the gridiron exercise that I had set up, the one which Doug had rejected. Sean excitedly told me how he was looking at his surroundings in a new way, with a view to translating the most mundane scenes into carefully shaded drawings. Other arts instructors in prisons have noted similar instances of an inmate attempting to integrate important new information, not always as enthusiastically. Gary Wyatt spoke to me of one inmate who had to leave a creative writing class for a period of 94 time, in turmoil, " do some reassessment of what he had written." Edwards (1994) notes that she will only offer individual instruction in drawing when an inmate approaches her for it. An art therapist, she differs in her rationale from me, but the two aspects of art overlap in prisons, where self-esteem, learning and self-expression are so closely linked. Differences in education and skills do not always translate into the handicap belonging to the inmate. In many crafts, for example, prisoners enjoy a level of skill and expertise to rival the professional on the outside. Stained glass, leathercraft, and woodworking are three domains in which, locally, inmate artists excel. I found all three of these crafts were approached with great seriousness in the institution. Without even amateur experience in any of these areas, I was averse to offering any input, beyond marveling at the inmates' sophistication. Artists hoping to teach in an institution where such media are entrenched securely in the leisure curriculum may find their proficiency directly challenged by the dominant inmate in that craft. Marian Otterstrom mentioned the trouble Prison Arts have had when placing an instructor of stained glass into one institution. Because one inmate has claimed the unofficial title of expert/teacher, he has generated resistance to any challenge to his influence, in spite of any additional information or technical skill outsiders may offer. Paranoia This subsection concerns those comments and other behaviors of inmates that suggested a level of distrust bordering on a paranoid attitude. A general suspicion of outsiders prevails with any initial contact: convicts are habituated to being measured, assessed, categorized and documented, as wards of society, for most of their lives (Foucault, 1979; White, 1993). Most have experienced incarceration from an early age. Anybody who presents him or herself as a researcher in prison can expect a wary reception on the prisoners' part. Attempting to overcome this wariness, and prove beyond doubt that you are on their side, not that of administration, can absorb a great deal of mental and 95 emotional energy. For my part, I never succeeded entirely. 'Fence sitting' is not an option; thus the classic notion in ethnography of the detached, non-partisan observer, has no meaning in a prison. From the start I tried to be open about the kind of research I was hoping to conduct, and the sorts of experiences that I thought might occur as a result of the art interventions I could offer. Time after time, Neil challenged me as to my true intentions. Satyajit's reluctance to turn in his consent form, and his concern over the number of interviewers I intended to use, suggested a hypersensitivity to the use I would put to the information I was seeking. Joking, I once replied to his query about what I intended with the inmates' art works I was gathering, that they would form a special collection in a museum somewhere. His expression was one of alarm as he said, "Really?" Despite repeated claims that I had no intention of submitting their art work to any psychoanalysis, Satyajit frequently asked me what plans I had for their art. To one of Neil's repeated questions, "Why am I so impatient?", I answered, "I don't know, Neil. Why are you so impatient?" He rejoined, "That's just what a psychologist would say. They always answer a question with a question." He and Sean then chatted about the subject of psychologists and psychiatrists in general. When Abe finished his printmaking, kindly allowing me a number of prints to keep, he joked that I could use it to analyze him. By this time I had given up trying to convince them of my indifference to psychoanalysis. Whatever recreational psychoanalysis occurred was in fact more often directed at me than the other way around. One evening I remarked to Colin my astonishment at the number of behaviour and attitude management programs he had undergone. Another inmate summed up an inmate's typical 'curriculum' this way: "After all the courses in psychology, all the behaviour modification and cognitive skills programs, we're about one half psychiatrist and one half psychologist. We can figure a person out pretty fast." The most transparent show of paranoia emerged when I arranged to interview those four or five inmates who had promised me their cooperation. Once I had called Alicia to 96 confirm that I would bring a tape recorder, she told me (with barely suppressed glee, I sensed) that three inmates had rescinded, adding that the inmates had found me altogether too pushy: I was accused of treating them like a class of kindergarten children. I had even, reputedly, forced them to use fingerpaint! The closest medium that they might have mistaken for fingerpaint was chalk pastel. Discussing this incident with Gary Wyatt and Marian Otterstrom, I was again relieved to find my experience not unusual. Prisoners have long memories, and transferring stories from one to another, as between any two people, can create fictions and wild exaggerations. One framing and matting session that Marian had offered elsewhere ran afoul when an inmate's mat was accidentally bent. Subsequent sessions were declined because, as rumour went, they (i.e. Marian/Prison Arts) broke the inmates' mats and frames. Perceived Slights Closely related to the previous section are those incidences of perceived slights and outwardly hostile interactions that impaired the delivery of the art course. I am not claiming personal exemption from responsibility in these situations; in the highly sensitive environment of prison, extra caution must be taken in one's personal interactions. At times, due to fatigue, or the feeling of being under siege, I would react more spontaneously, and with more aggression, than my professional role demanded. On the other hand, if the men enjoyed 'setting me up' I was a willing victim. At least it showed I was human, and in a fundamental way, on their level. This subsection deals more with their perceived humiliations than mine. For the latter I refer the reader to the section, 'Confrontations'. The most significant situation in this regard occurred early on: During the beginning of a class, I had to stop repeatedly when one inmate chose to talk and joke at precisely those moments when I had something to say. This strategy of classroom disruption will be familiar to any teacher. I approached the student and asked him to stop interrupting me. 97 Juan took offense at my direct reproach and left indignantly. Immediately I regretted what I had done. He was a lively and entertaining personality, one whom I had looked forward to having in the class. At the end of class, I asked his buddy, Neil, what was it that so offended Juan. Without answering directly, Neil told me that the inmates were annoyed at my showing up late for the second time in a row. Perhaps Neil wished to deflect attention away from Juan's embarrassment. Much later, when the art course was sputtering to its demise, Susan suggested that the reason I was losing so many men from my class might be partly due to my altercation with Juan. One of the cardinal rules in inmate-teacher interfaces is, never dress down a student in front of his mates. One should always take that student aside. The same student, feeling humiliated, may persuade others to boycott the course. Unlike regular schools, these men have to live with each other all day, every day. One's influence in a cell unit is much greater than on the streets. Gary Wyatt and Marian Otterstrom concurred with Susan's analysis. I doubted the extent of Juan's tactic of vengeance, assuming he engaged in one. Neil, for example, was one of the last remaining members of the class. There were occasions when an inmate would goad me, hoping that I would get enmeshed in his trap. These situations were intended, according to Paul (in interview), to determine on which side my allegiance lay. Alternatively, if they sensed a weak spot, any vulnerability on my part, they would close in. Confrontations This section deals with those episodes when I was directly culpable in my least successful communications with inmates. Some of the incidents may have the ring of familiarity, but my purpose here is in determining where my level of participation lay, even to the extent of initiating disputes. The section has been broken down into the following subsections: personal barbs and differences with program or curriculum. 98 Personal Barbs The principal character in the following scenes is Neil. Young, good-looking, witty, with a deceptively charming air, he appeared to take delight in stealing the attention of the class whenever he could. Of all the inmates there, his personality is perhaps the most intact, the least damaged by long-term incarceration. He first caught my attention when, during the introductory class, he asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. Sensing the sarcasm in his remark, I replied that I was already 'grown up'. My reply elicited a terse laugh from another inmate. Might this moment of levity, at Neil's expense, inspired an ongoing vendetta to persecute me? To believe the opinions of Susan and the directors of Prison Arts, it is possible. What I failed to grasp at the time was his genuine concern with my professional aims, a subject he returned to with almost obsessive persistence. He clarified his question: what did I hope to do with my art education degree? I told him that I was doing it, that is, teaching in prisons. My answer did not seem to appease him. During the second class, Neil, bored after finishing his drawing, began to sort through a pile of contour and gesture drawings we had done on the first evening. Most of these were on newsprint, and as always I had stressed the disposable, exercise-only aspect of the pieces. I had brought in a can of charcoal fixative to spray some light/dark eraser drawings which the inmates were doing that evening. Neil demanded that I find and spray his gesture drawings from the previous evening. I told him I would allow him one drawing to spray, as I did not have enough fixative to do everybody's. He accused me of being cheap. I told him I was paying out of pocket for the spray, and nobody was reimbursing me. He then crumpled up the pile of drawings he had set aside (many of which had been done by other inmates) and stomped off. I calmly set aside one unharmed drawing, intending to spray it for Neil's benefit, and put the others in the rubbish bin outside the P.O.V.. Neil returned and accused me of willfully destroying his artwork. I asked him what possible satisfaction he was getting from teasing me in this way. He seemed 99 momentarily at a loss for words. He grinned and said, "Don't you wish you could throw me out?" I answered, "But you are the best artist in my class." Earlier that evening Neil had spent a good deal of energy teasing me with a childish setup. When I refused to participate or acknowledge it, he persisted, until forced to explain the joke. This seemed to dissipate the energy of his attack. After a few evenings of this sort of persecution, I began to dread my sessions at the institution for the prospect of dealing with Neil. It required a great deal of energy to be on mental alert the entire time, beyond the customary 'automatic guard' that I summoned whenever I entered this 'high-medium' security institution. One evening, after a stressful day of planning, gathering materials, arranging transport and driving out in the midst of rush-hour traffic, I had a moment of relative peace when the men were quietly involved in their art. I collapsed in a chair. Neil saw me slouched, my eyes red-rimmed, and said, without a trace of empathy, "You look really tired." I admitted that I was. To his credit, he backed off a little that evening. Neil's most virulent attack ultimately hurt him. He had been volleying the usual barbs at me, such as "How did you ever get to be a teacher? This [exercise] is stupid. [Your Education Faculty] don't have very high standards if they let you in," and so on. I was passing around a blank sketchbook as a sample of the bonus I was offering to those inmates who volunteered to participate in my research. Neil snatched the book from his neighbour, turned it spine up and flipped through the pages. Out fell a receipt from Opus, the framing and art supply store. It is the store's policy to print the name, address and telephone number of their regular customers on each receipt. Neil picked up the receipt, read it, and in a bold voice announced, "I know a lot about you!" He waved the paper tauntingly and read it out. I tried to dismiss the import of his discovery, saying that the information was available in any phone book. Not convinced by my nonchalance, he said, "I think I'll pass this on to some of the gay guys in my cell wing. I'll tell them to give you a call when they get out." Satyajit laughed and, grinning, said there was a gay guy in the 100 kitchen where he works (as though this fact in itself were sufficient cause for humour). I told Neil, "Do that. My social life is pretty boring; I could use a few dates." I might have used the opportunity to discuss the implicit homohatred in this incident, but felt the subject was a little too close for comfort. While I have no difficulty about being 'out' as a gay man, I feel the classroom is not an appropriate forum to proselytize. My principal aim at the time was to defuse Neil's attack, which I felt I did. Still concerned by Neil's level of abuse, I called Susan the afternoon of the following class and described to her the incident, including, upon her asking, what Neil had said. She offered to do one of three things: bring the matter to Neil's Unit Manager, talk to Neil with me present, and talk to him by herself. We agreed she should speak with him alone. When I arrived for that evening's class, Susan told me that Neil had initially decided to quit the art class, but after some reflection, had opted to alter his behaviour. Susan added that if I had made it a major incident, I might have experienced a boycott of the class. Neil, in the hobbyshop, wished to speak with both of us. In a clear voice, without his typical sarcasm, he spoke of various matters, refusing all the while to acknowledge that his conduct in the class had been anything but salutary. When I confronted him with his remarks about my professional abilities, he said that he was merely interested in where I had received my training and what my credentials were. He then apologized in an abstract way, saying, "If I have insulted or injured you personally in any way, then I apologize for it and will not display such conduct in the future." I accepted his apology and welcomed him back to the class. Susan added her comments where appropriate, and had us all sign an incident report form, a copy of which she gave to Neil. Scanning this formal looking document, which would go into Neil's file, I noticed her closing comment: "It is my opinion that Mr. L . has decided to reverse his decision to quit the art course in order to improve his chance at attaining transfer to William Head in the near future." William Head 101 is one of the softest institutions, in terms of security and on-site facilities, in British Columbia. It is known popularly as 'Club Fed'. One of the characteristics of a convicted offender's denial is a tendency to minimization, particularly with respect to the victim, when recounting his or her offense (Aulich, 1994). Neil, in my opinion, was acting in typical offender fashion, when he denied the nature and impact of the kinds of abuses he indulged in with me. At the same time, it is difficult to determine the limit of one's own tolerance, to know when innocent teasing becomes outright abuse. A l l teachers must find their own limits, and without being dogmatic, let their students know well in advance what behaviours they will and will not accept. At times I was oversensitive to Neil's goading. Once, telling a story of my earliest forays with oil paint, I recounted how I would mess around with my older brother's paint-by-number sets. Neil picked up the narrative: "I'll bet your brother used to beat up on you a lot, didn't he?" I panicked at what I considered a taunt about an abusive past, and accused him of making a non-sequitur. As I had hoped, he was mystified, so that the time required for me to explain the term was sufficient to divert attention from his rejoinder. Had I paid greater attention to the remark, I might have appreciated Neil's impeccable timing. Frank and Paul, in interview, both suggested I avoid being confrontational at all costs. I asked them for useful advice with setting up an art course at other institutions. Tellingly, what mattered to them much more than any curriculum content issues (what I had expected) was my behaviour and interaction with inmates. Frank put it plainly: I think a person has to understand we're not normal; it's not a normal environment. You have to be more willing to go that extra yard kinda thing, to give a guy a break without becoming confrontational. Because the guys in here are just looking for an outlet for their anger, somebody to dump on. I think a person has to be more compassionate, but yet assertive, but not aggressive... Paul shared with me some of the inmates' apprehensions with new instructors: But I'm just saying guys in here pick up, if a person's coming in here, it's either on our side or not. And if they're not, or not sympathetic enough you might say these guys will give you static. It's that simple. Or if you go for the hook when guys 102 needle you? And you seem to get hurt by it or you can't blow it off easy enough. Then they'll just keep on doing it. The punctuality issue was one possible tactic which Neil might have seized upon: Was he holding me to account for any mistake in order to subvert my confidence? My quick and profuse apology may have compelled him to upbraid me for several imaginary slights as the course unfolded. His scolding tone, and introductory remarks of, "You've got to understand..." became a kind of familiar litany. I am tempted to discount almost anything this manipulator told me: his arguments were so often a mixture of facts, hyperboles, lies and fabrications, it became pointless to bother sorting out any truth behind his criticisms. Neil did make a dramatic improvement in his behaviour, following the incident report; only at the end did he resort to his customary manipulation. This occurred when he approached me on the last evening of classes, with Sean, to find out my real intentions with the research I was doing there. Some of this scene has been related in the first section, 'Researcher/Teacher Dilemmas'; here I wish to emphasize the skillful way Neil managed to elicit from me, in spite of my resistance, personal information, without giving any useful information in return. Not satisfied with my assertion that I was looking for whatever they cared to divulge regarding their experiences of time (as, I repeatedly emphasized, is outlined on their consent forms) Neil asked me again what it was I was looking for. I told him, whatever they could give me. He accused me of being evasive, as he did when he asked me what my plans were after I received my degree and I could not think of an answer. Neil allowed he would give me information, but that it would have to be two-way. I agreed to this. He asked me what I had done to get into this institution, making a leading statement, "They sent you here to find out..." I told him nobody sent me here but me. Abe, who was in the room preparing to print his linoleum, told me Neil and Sean wanted to know my hidden agenda. Neil told me to drop the art business, as if everybody knew it was nothing 103 more than a sham, to cover my real intention. I repeated that, my degree program being art education, it would be quite impossible to drop the 'art' part. To Neil's query as to whether I had any children, I quickly asserted that I would not answer questions of a personal nature. As he continued his questions in this way, questions to do with my career history, age, any professional wrong turns and personal failures I might have had, it occurred to me that Neil had managed to turn the situation around: he was the interviewer, I the interviewee, and he had no intention of switching back the roles. Neil had one agenda, to ferret out whatever dirt he could about me. His credibility vanished; I felt I had had my confidence betrayed. The revelation angered me, and I swore, accusing him of playing mind games with me. Neil and Steve left the room. Abe told me not to worry about Neil: he used that manner with everybody there, including most of the other inmates. Curriculum Differences Neil and Sean started their discussion with valid criticism, which I have noted in the first section of this chapter. In order not to dismiss this entire meeting, despite its unfortunate outcome, more of their comments are noted in this section. These, as well as certain remarks of other inmates, suggest the onus of the inmates' resistance in these instances lay with me. I was quick to defend, for example, the complexity of the exercises I had brought into the art classes. When asked what he considered more challenging, Neil cited the oil painting course. I countered that the skills I was teaching had little to do with rendering a specific set of diagrammatic images, as I considered the oil painting course did (trees, clouds, mountains, water). Rather, I said the exercises were intended to open up alternative ways of seeing one's environment. For confirmation, I asked Sean whether he had not told me previously how his way of looking at his surroundings had altered, as a result of the shading exercise he had done. Sean grunted in agreement. To Neil's repeated criticism that he had done many of the exercises before, and they were therefore boring, I 104 said simply that many professional artists still use the same techniques, to develop their skill in these areas. Regarding the place and nature of aesthetic discussion in a leisure art course, at times certain inmates were quite outspoken about aesthetic and cultural matters that came up in discussion, and strongly defended their opinions. Neil was, surprisingly, not among them. Jabhar, ever combative, happened to be the most articulate as well. Discussing the many cultural symbolic associations of colors, I acted as scribe while the inmates offered their opinions. From time to time I added a few of my own. I wrote them all on the charts I had fixed to the wall behind me. The color black elicited much input. Jabhar accused me of perpetuating a Eurocentric bias with my use of the term "black magic". I refuted the charge, saying the term was well-known, even being used to advertise chocolates; my function, I told him, was to draw up all associations, good and bad alike. As an example, I mentioned that within Sufism and other religious traditions, the color black has had a long tradition of spiritual richness, representing the via negativa, the mystical emptiness of the ego. Thus blackness represented a desirable state, connoting total annihilation in God. In my explanation, I said that Sufism was an ancient mystical sect that predated Christianity, ultimately influencing Islam. Jabhar was quick to counter my claim: There were three basic branches of Islam, he said: Sunni, Shiite, and Sufi. A l l derived from the prophet Mohammed. So how could Sufism be older than Mohammed? Assuming by his name and ardent defense that he was a devotee of Islam, I conceded to his superior knowledge in this area. Jabhar frequently demonstrated fixed opinions, admitting no compromise. During the class regarding his perception of the vagina shape, Jabhar took issue with the title and meaning of another image. The drawing, I Am So Handsome, by Mildred Walker, shows an ass in human dress admiring himself in a hand-held mirror. In the reflection a young man with a trim beard stares back. Given the title, I suggested that the reflection shows the way the donkey sees himself. Jabhar disputed my interpretation, offering his own, that the 105 man in the mirror may be the devil, who is known to appear to people this way. Seeking a kind of synthetic explanation, I suggested that the sin being committed is vanity, which would then account for the devil's image in the mirror. Jabhar said nothing either way. Other instances where I defended my opinion met with Jabhar's equal or greater resistance. The incident with Doug, regarding my choice of gridiron exercise, needs no repetition here. One may, and ought to, teach from a position of authority. Such authority must, however, be grounded in knowledge, and be made manifest in a spirit of kindness and compassion, not dogmatism or authoritarianism. In an incarceral setting, one may find one's authority being challenged for its own sake. At such moments I occasionally floundered, not certain whether or not to push my point of view: doing so seldom, if ever, accomplishes what one has intended. Had I the chance to relive those situations where my statements were actively challenged, I should have abandoned my position more readily. In those cases, I seem to have forgotten my role as a researcher. Inmates are adults, and must be respected for their knowledge, which is considerable, and values, which are deeply entrenched and which they will defend passionately. Co-operation and Successful Arts Programs This section refers to those moments when teaching and research were successful: when inmates seemed focused and engaged in class, or volunteered information from a personal perspective or history. The actual content of these moments will be elaborated under the section, 'Inmates' World'. Included here are those examples of co-operation from staff as well as recollections of the directors of Prison Arts Foundation and the inmates I interviewed, of successful art/s interventions in prisons. 106 Co-operation with Inmates Just as Neil embodied the majority of situations of inmate barbs, and Jabhar those of inmate contention, Colin comprised the bulk of co-operative interactions. So helpful was he, that early on I surmised he was, socially, an outcast, not welcomed into the inner circle of inmate solidarity. I have little evidence to substantiate this claim, other than the mute, slightly embarrassed regard the others paid him on those occasions when he indulged me with anecdotes of his past, his present experiences and attitudes with art and craft activities, and his religious and moral beliefs. Colin's open, intense expression and his willingness to support my position during disputes with Jabhar or Neil set him apart from the rest of the inmates. Where many of my attempts to generate discussion fell flat with other inmates, Colin always had something to offer. His contributions during the session on colouur kept the momentum flowing. To my suggestion of religious devotion for the colour black, Colin offered the example of the black robes of the Jesuits. Indeed, subjects of religious and moral interest stimulated his attention. In general, the colour session was perhaps the most successful of all the discussions I initiated. During the discussion with Jabhar involving the image of the ass, I asked whether anybody had seen the film 'Seven', as a way of backing up my argument that vanity comprised one of the seven deadly sins. Colin, defying the unwritten inmate code that forbids taking the side of staff under any circumstance, offered that he had. That evening Frank came to my rescue as well. Engrossed in a debate with Jabhar over the intentional hidden imagery that one encounters in some art work, Frank offered the example of Dali. I was grateful for his intercession at a time when Jabhar was defending his opinion. In retrospect, Jabhar may have been correct all along. I recall listening to a professor of modern art discussing the phallic symbol of a moon's reflection in a painting by Edvard Munch, The Dance of Death. Then there is Freud's (1947) classic thesis on Leonardo's The Saints Mary and Anne with the Infant John the Baptist. Turning the image of the 107 painting sideways, Freud describes the convincing outline of a vulture, which possesses a significant symbolic power related to Leonardo's childhood. Once, a relatively innocuous conversation with Neil finished with his declaring, "Basically, I'm a good guy, aren't I?" I said nothing either way. When he repeated his question, Colin said, "You have to look inside yourself to answer that question." Neil snapped, "No comments from the peanut gallery!" suggesting the low regard in which he (and other inmates?) held Colin. After classes, Colin and Frank, the inmate unofficially in charge of hobbyshop operations, would stay on to help me clean up and bring the materials back to the hobbyshop for storage. The P.O.V. space having a somewhat aseptic appearance, this involved some effort: tables we had pulled out from the walls would have to be returned, and the several fliers and folders replaced in tidy stacks on them. Many of the programs taking place in the adjoining rooms dealt with substance abuse and addiction, hence much of the literature on the tables described the various support groups and memberships such as Alcoholics Anonymous. The inmates' willingness to volunteer their opinions and be subjected to my scrutiny should not be overlooked as evidence of co-operation on their part. When the program was cancelled, of the five remaining inmates who agreed to being interviewed, three followed through despite my insistence on using a tape recorder. Mysteriously, Colin was one whose co-operation in this respect was tentative: Ihad to remind him, through Alicia, of his verbal agreement, and upon hearing of my proviso, he declined completely. Neil's co-operation, not only in this instance, but throughout the course, was predicated on my giving him a certificate of completion at the end: evidence of completion of any programs while incarcerated can enhance one's personal file. Neil's manner was not always manipulative. During our second-to-last interview, both he and Sean had very positive things to say about Mr. Hyde, who, in their opinion, did a great deal for programs in the facility. As well, Tanya, the former hobbycraft officer, 108 treated the inmates as men, unlike Susan, who, in comparison, brought a security guard's perspective to the position. Positive Art Experiences In addition to examples of co-operation on the inmates' part, following are those incidents where one or more inmates had positive experiences with a particular aspect of the art program. One of the episodes of art history and criticism that elicited some interested questions and comments occurred with some samples of Canadian, Mexican, European, Middle Asian and Primitive art I had chosen at random to illustrate different approaches to color. My guiding focus was arbitrary, symbolic and emotive uses, as opposed to naturalistic ones, the artists had made. Man, Controller of the Universe (1940s), by Diego Rivera, received ample commentary, especially regarding the ominous rows of soldiers and atomic imagery. Frank astutely pointed out the blood cell motif, a common one in the work of Rivera. A Persian miniature of a hunting scene (anon., mid-sixteenth century), received more of the men's attention, with several inmates finding hidden animal shapes in the landscape. Frank asked whether one of the foreigners depicted might be Portuguese. I supported his hunch, given the figure's dress and physical characteristics. Neil asked how the cave drawings of Lascaux were preserved so long. Louis Muhlstock's Rust Triptych (1970s) generated a remark from an inmate who was fascinated by the idea of finding inspiration in common rust. The collage session began with promise; unfortunately as so often happened, the inmates' energy of the session's first evening failed to survive into the following one. I feared the topic that I gave them, the idea of finding their 'spirit familiar' (to borrow a North American Native concept), might be a little too personal: they were asked to select a wild animal with which they might identify, then assemble an imaginary setting for it. I offered my suggestion of animals in captivity, openly drawing a parallel with their own 109 situation. The men appeared taken by the idea, although not everybody chose the theme of captivity. A studio session that generated real interest, as opposed to a sort of rote, automatic response, was the pointillist color exercise. I asked for help arranging the fruit and kitchen crockery I had brought in from home. Nobody came forward, but as I started to place objects on a table in front of them, Neil, Jabhar and Sean gave me specific directions. The application of the paint in a dot-like pattern, using the eraser end of office pencils as paint reservoirs, had sufficient novelty and ease to engage the men quickly. Soon the entire class was softly tapping; conversation was intermittent and limited to one's immediate neighbour. Jabhar's pounding, louder and more intense than the rest, posed a minor irritant to Sean. Satyajit demonstrated his usual flair, executing a fine drawing, which he proceeded to cover with dots in Australian Aboriginal fashion. Neil, sitting beside Satyajit, punctuated his frequent expressions of impatience by emitting several sighs. Signaling his loss of contact with the exercise, as often happened, he got up and began to wander. I felt a familiar rising tension, anticipating some snide outburst, or playful distraction of another inmate. He sauntered to where I was painting, and leaned over me. After a moment he said, "You're blending those colors real-ly nice!" Ever suspicious of his ironic intent, I asked, "Do you really think so?" When he answered, "Yes!", I thanked him. Nick commented later that he thought the class went well, and further, that the art course was running on schedule - an item of importance to Neil: he had checked the calendar (appendix V) and found our rate of progress satisfactory. Staff Co-operation The other component of working as a volunteer art teacher in an incarceral setting, the co-operation of regular staff, can be as important as the inmates themselves in establishing and maintaining a positive art instruction. I have discussed those instances whereby the communication and co-operation with staff broke down. To bring some 110 measure of balance to this account, I turn here to those instances of genuine helpfulness on the part of staff. Both Freida and Mr. Hyde, in the face-to-face exchanges I had with them, showed tact and patience with me. Freida in particular showed an almost motherly quality of reassurance, which had immeasurable value in the hostile and tense environment that a medium-high security correctional facility can project. Her style of dress was appropriate to her position, yet showed a certain personal freedom. Whenever Mr. Hyde left the room, she engaged me in her personable manner, managing to tease out intimate details of my professional life. Such is her shrewd ability to inspire trust and confidence in newcomers. Mr. Hyde made himself available to answer my sometimes irrelevant questions during most of the second morning, even treating me to a free lunch: a privilege, given the funding cutbacks of late which have eliminated free meals for volunteers and teachers. The teachers I met on my first day, with Gus, were very interested in the research I was conducting and the art course I was offering. One teacher went so far as to make herself available to my ad-hoc class on the second day, supporting my lesson with enthusiasm and offering help to the inmates who needed it most. Gus spent nearly the entire day escorting me throughout the facility, on my initial visit, taking me inside such highly secure office areas as a 'bubble' on a cell unit. Tanya, according to the inmates, participated in many extracurricular events without additional pay. Susan kept the lines of communication open, even to the end, when I was constantly frustrated by the lack of interest shown by the higher-echelon staff. On her own initiative, she would often telephone me at my home to establish when I would be arriving, to anticipate clearance for any additional materials and equipment I might be bringing, and to find out what other preparations she and the inmate students might need to make. Her hesitancy to participate in some of the exercises (unlike Tanya, she refused to model for the class) may have been a function of her uncertainty of her own power and limitations within the prison bureaucracy:, Refusing to pose, she explained, "It's pretty political in here." She 111 disposed herself in a professional manner with regardto my altercation with Neil, acting as mediator while demonstrating to Neil the gravity of his offence and supporting my position. To the end, she offered suggestions for ways I might rekindle interest in the art course, or obtain the data I required for my research through other means, such as coming into the hobbyshop during weekdays when there were more men: I could wait and relax in the office area, interviewing men as they wished, in a less self-conscious or formal way. Her initial suggestion that I change my schedule to Saturdays was made possibly without her awareness of the restrictions placed upon her work schedule. Unfortunately I cannot concur with her endorsement of Mr. Sandstone. Alicia was warm and personable with me when Gus introduced me that first day. Her terse conversations with me on the phone thereafter, and rescinding of promises, left me uncertain of her support; also, I found her habit of addressing me as 'dear' was inappropriately familiar and condescending. Other Successful Arts Programs My description of this subsection must be taken on faith: I have no personal experience, as observer or participant, of other, more successful programs which are mentioned herein. These successes are recounted by Gary Wyatt and Marian Otterstrom of Prison Arts Foundation, and Paul and Frank, the two inmates who submitted to taped interviews. In offering them here I hope to approach an answer to the question about prison art/s programs which ultimately came into focus during the unfolding of the art course: what works, and why? Gary and Marian cited several examples of other visual artists, writers and dramatists whose contacts with the prisoners they taught left positive memories, both among the prisoners and staff. They mentioned the difficulties several experienced volunteer art instructors had with existing staff, such as resident arts and crafts officers and front desk security personnel, and the means they used to overcome them. Marian mentioned that since scheduling regular meetings between staff and volunteers, 112 communications have improved: they realize that they have similar clients and tasks. She recalled how long it would take, previously, for inside staff to accept incoming volunteers and contract workers. Some arts and craft officers will telephone Prison Arts to make arrangements for art instructors to visit. Gary reminded me that suspicious guards are simply doing their jobs: personalities are as variable in these positions as anywhere on the outside. He recalled a situation whereby one guard was very suspicious of a drama and music festival that was scheduled to perform at one facility. The inmates so enjoyed the performance that this same man spent considerable energy helping the artists move their equipment. One multimedia artist will bring in whatever she is working on at the time, including writing, and will use the different media to invite prisoners to participate in a loose, casual way. Discussion is generated from the interdisciplinary activity as well. Another artist works in a similar way, using such discarded materials as videotape to weave improbable objects, without a specific product in mind. A well-known poet, who routinely holds creative writing workshops in prisons throughout North America, uses his encounters with fractious security staff as material for poetry. One of the most unexpected arts program successes, considering the level of risk-taking required, has been in theatre. Some of the inmates who participated in an introductory theatre program at the institution where I was assigned have since developed their program at William Head. Both have been self-sustaining for years. Their productions (some in collaboration with drama students from the University of Victoria) draw a wide audience from outside the institution. Female actors have made significant contributions in these collaborations. A rewarding outcome of the theatre efforts of one inmate actor has been the establishment of the Station Street Arts Centre in Vancouver, which has flourished under this man's direction since his release. Storytelling is another example of a type of art which was greeted with suspicion at first. Marian said, "I went in with this storyteller, and they really didn't know ... 113 storytelling. 'So what's storytelling, are you just a good bullshitter?', they said. 'Cause we get a lot of that in here, you know!'" Out of these workshops some very personal narratives have emerged. The influence of Prison Arts, and the artists they have contracted, extends well beyond the Canadian border. The Maori poet Alan Duff, author of Once Were Warriors, agreed to organize some writing workshops in local prisons. Having a background of reform school residency, Duff supplies books and educational opportunities to underprivileged communities. Closer to the lower mainland, the poet Susan Musgrave and her husband, an inmate, have set up intensive writing workshops as well. Experience serving time, while giving many of these artists and writers a spiritual kinship with the inmates they teach, is not a prerequisite; indeed, the security clearance required for ex-inmates to come into prisons as volunteers can pose an impossible barrier in many instances. Generally, Gary and Marian have found that the inmates they teach appreciate the contact with people from the outside. The inmate hobbyshop manager Frank echoed this sentiment in interview: "...I phone my mom maybe once every two months and that's the only contact I have with the street. Except for like yourself when you come in here and the staff around here but that's about it." The other inmate I interviewed, Paul, observed that knowing the instructor's value system or politico-philosophical orientation can help: One local researcher/instructor, a self-confessed Marxist, is perceived as having a social conscience, and therefore being more sympathetic to the plight of these men. Prison Structure As with any bureaucracy, prisons operate according to an internal logic that does not offer easy explanation to the outsider. My concern here is with the ways in which the structure of the institution impacted upon both the established routine of leisure activities, and the art course I attempted to deliver. Under the pervasive influence of prison life, time, 114 in the ways in which it is decimated, reassembled and distributed, becomes something very different to inmates than to people in free society. This difference increases, the longer one's term of incarceration. For example, how prisoners internalized the bureaucratic, monochronic paradigm astonished me. Offering a mere hint at (as I was only able to determine) the complexity of this phenomenon, this section is subdivided into the following domains: prison programs, prison structure and routine, inmates' routine, inmates' concepts and experiences of time, and effects of prisonisation. The last three domains will lead into the final section, 'Inmates' World'. Prison Programs It is tempting to infer the status accorded to the arts from the lack of any formal art or craft instruction at any correctional facility in the lower mainland. Knowing this, I set about constructing an art course using a content and structure which I knew intimately and hoped would stimulate the intended clientele. This discipline-based general secondary school level course, set at about the grade ten level, had a flexibility I thought would ensure adequate input from adult students. I made certain assumptions about what provisions would be at my disposal; among them was an on-site hobbyshop officer who had a background and interest in arts and crafts. My first assumption about staff was quickly destroyed when I discovered that the person responsible for obtaining my access to the facility, Tanya, had moved on within the system. Gus, her replacement, came from a background in Security. He told me his degree had been in psychology. Arts and crafts come under a separate department, Programs. In spite of a cut in pay many security personnel will make the switch, tempted by the regular working schedule, from 0800 hours to 1600 hours, Monday to Friday. Prisoners regard staff in Programs more positively than Security personnel, since the former are offering something. This is Marian's opinion, one for which I found support among some of the inmates. Unfortunately, arts and crafts' status within Programs is provisional: neither Gus nor 115 Susan had any formal education or interest in art or hobbies: Susan had been assigned the hobbyshop officer's position as a summer job placement, and Gus used the position as a quick stepping stone to the higher-paying one of Case Management. One of Gary's assurances with respect to my experience was that each prison operates according to its own guidelines. My other experience with teaching a similar art course, at the eastern Ontario institution, bore this out. Much of the variability of an art program's success has to do with the receptivity of the site: the existing staff can either support or oppose it. On rare occasions, art teachers have found a permanent vocation within such an austere pedagogical climate. A head teacher with whom I worked, at a minimum-security institution in eastern Ontario, had a background in fine arts, although she was not teaching art at that institution, and Marian cited a woman who used her contact with a facility, through Prison Arts, to enroll in an anger management course, in order to teach that program at other correctional facilities. Such cases may be less unusual than at first supposed: the therapeutic dimension of art would dispose one toward other personality and behavioral modification programs that have been the mainstay of prison rehabilitation. As the art course I ran operated during leisure time I encountered a different attitude and greater competition for inmates' attention than I did during my placement at the eastern Ontario facility, where the art course was offered for secondary school credit. In British Columbia, where art and craft/leisure sessions will run during an inmate's own time, novice art/s instructors can expect inmates to get up and leave, and re-enter a classroom at will. Other programs being held at the same time, such as twelve step addiction recovery, various Native ceremonies open to non-Native inmates, and lifers' meetings, may interfere with one's course. Canteen at this institution was open every second Wednesday and Thursday, from 1630 to 2030 hours, and with over 300 men lined up to purchase tobacco and toilet items, took up a good deal of their time. One evening Neil told me he felt guilty for missing his workout sessions while the art course was being held. These leisure activities are taken seriously, are managed by the inmates themselves and are well-attended. 116 Given an inmate's restricted timetable, the number of hours available at the end of a working or school day can be as few as three and a half: supper is finished at 1800 hours, leaving the men at their disposal until lockup at 2200 hours. Prison Routine Expecting the unexpected in a prison can mean being ready to spring into action at a moment's notice. My long wait for a response from the prison I had been assigned was followed by two brief visits, and sudden clearance to start the course up within the week. The second day there, before finishing an impossibly long reading assignment, I was ushered to the school area without five minutes to mentally prepare myself. That day being a Friday, there were few inmates present. Although my little lesson had finished by 1500 hours, and a friend had announced his arrival to pick me up shortly thereafter, I was detained until after 1600 hours when Mr. Hyde could escort me back outside. My tardy arrival on my first two evenings of classes impaired my relationship with both staff and inmates, and may have handicapped my credibility for the duration of the course. After Neil's sharp criticism, I took care to arrive on time for future classes, but it seemed the damage was irrevocable. Classes had to finish by 2045 hours, to allow time for me to vacate the premises by the close of visiting time, 2100 hours. Any complex media or processes, such as printmaking or casting, would have to be either complete or at a stage where they could be relocated easily and set aside, further complicating one's sense of timing when planning for specific media. In a regular school, certain subject areas such as chemistry, art and physical education, for example, are understandably indulged with respect to late arrivals from those subject classes. In prisons, as Marian said, "You can't run a program ten minutes later.... It is over when it's over." Outside these prescribed hours, there was no opportunity to relax and talk in a leisurely way. Susan would take her dinner break between 1630 and 1800 hours. On occasion, when I arrived early, I was escorted as much as fifteen minutes early into the facility. These were unusual instances, 117 however, and ones which some of the front desk guards treated with uncertainty. Normal visiting hours are from 1800 to 2100 hours, and at times I would have to wait outside with the partners and families of inmates. The impossibility of having regular classes held on a Saturday, which might have saved the art course, has been documented. Even so, I would have faced the loss of additional men through weekend conjugal visits. Other weekday evenings were difficult to schedule: I was fortunate to re-schedule a class for the following Friday, when I missed an evening due to lack of transportation. Normally Susan's work shifts varied from week to week (her hours lasted from 800 to 1600 hours, or from 1300 to 2100 hours), making any unusual alterations to regular classes impossible. Two other factors that impinged on the destiny of my art course were, the unusually high turnover in hobbyshop staff (four officers within three months), and the fact that I was constrained to offer the course during the summer months: the added hours of daylight and warm weather induced many men to play sports outdoors, further reducing attendance in the art classes. Little of the above will appear foreign to the teacher of regular schools. The few changes to routine were serious, and came about at the governance of such staff as Mr. Sandstone, for apparently arbitrary reasons. The resultant feeling of being out of control of my course's destiny was disconcerting. It undermined my sense of confidence and autonomy while in the institution. Inmates'Routine The extent to which inmates' routines varied within the same institution surprised me. The importance of established routines in inmates' lives was evident in the way others protected their areas: the room I had been promised for the art course was used for card playing, and surrendered grudgingly. An inmate who was lifting weights in the gym beside the P.O.V., came out to the breezeway that connected the two areas, when Frank and I were spraying some pastel drawings, to complain about the smell. Given the heightened 118 capacity for breathing and oxygen need when undergoing intensive physical exercise, I could appreciate the fellow's concern. But his territoriality appeared to extend into what I considered a fairly common, neutral area. Evidently I was mistaken. The amount of freedom granted prisoners in determining their own schedules also surprised me. Frank told me he kept a day planner, his daily routines were so busy. In it he would write lists of things he had to do; specific times as such were not entered. A l l three interviewees - Frank, Paul and Neil - mentioned they spent at least 21 hours a week on their hobbies, outside of other leisure routines. Neil broke his hours down in a systematic, day-to-day manner. Frank and Paul, not having regular visitors, put their free time toward personal uses. Paul kept an active writing file, into which he made entries nightly, his schedule having gone completely nocturnal since his incarceration. Outside his cell, Paul spends most of his time in the hobbyshop, working on his stained glass. Frank's involvement with managing the hobbyshop kept him busy; his expertise with different materials was demanded when it came to ordering materials. He was also committed to developing a hobby therapy program, and spent his evenings helping other men with their hobbies. He hopes to work his course up to a recognized program, which can be implemented in this institution. Because he is so busy, Frank has noticed time passes very quickly, from day to day. He no longer sees his family, and spends little time with his mates in sports activities: he enjoys his work and interacting with his boss and other staff. Marian pointed out that the availability of arts courses outside of regular program time can be advantageous: the inmates are not as suspicious of any hidden, 'therapeutic' purpose, and will only attend out of interest. As the course is being offered in their time, it is not mandatory. Many inmates look forward to their arts activities as they give them something to do to pass the time. Marian warned me that any early weekend activity may compete unfavorably with the inmates' coveted extra hours of sleep. 119 Prisoners' Concepts and Experiences of Time Given the brief time I had to interact with these men, the following discoveries are based upon questions I posed to Frank, Paul and Neil during the interview sessions. There was no evidence that any art activity, certainly none that I implemented, had any effect one way or the other on these or any other inmates' sense of the passage or quality of time. To describe some of the times we spent together as an easy time, a good time, and so on, has little purpose and just as little meaning here. The most spontaneous expression from an inmate came from Doug, who was prompted by reading my letter of request. He told me that he felt the fifteen years he has spent in prison have passed relatively quickly, without his really thinking about it. He attributed some of this effortless time passage to his deep involvement in painting. Unfortunately he dropped out of the art course long before I could follow up on his intriguing remarks. Thus the respondents were tipped as to the kinds of answers I sought (the "Hawthorne effect"). Nonetheless, Paul was very articulate in his descriptions of the kinds of temporal experiences he has had as a result of his incarceration. He heartily endorsed artistic activity as a valuable means of utilizing one's time in prison. He likened the creative process to a rebirth: It's like, art and being creative is breaking down your boundaries in your mind and everything. And that's what doing time's all about, arid if you can transcend just your normal, the boundaries, you know your thinking patterns beyond that, there's no limits. Time just dissolves,... you get into that that space where it's, next thing you know it's lockup and you have to put your tools away, just disappear into what you're doing.... It's like a meditation too, if meditation is focusing on something, where your thoughts are stopping. You're just in the moment. Paul's career as a free man (he had dealt drugs) indicated a polychronic temporal orientation (see chapter two). Perhaps his way of rejecting the highly structured, monochronic environment of prison lay in his adapting to a totally nocturnal lifestyle. Now serving his eleventh year of a fourteen year sentence, his previous episodes of release have not been happy times. He complained bitterly of the rapid acceleration of technology while 120 he has languished in prison, expressing frustration over his inability to use such commonplace services as automatic bank machines and cordless phones. He blamed his inability to fit in and adjust to free society on the 'screws' who kept him behind bars for so long. Paul's sense of slippage with respect to the pace of regular urban society recalls the anachronic position in Gioscia's theory (1971) of different temporal orientations: People with a temporal sense in this position generally feel their own rate of time is advancing more slowly than that of the general population. This perception is often accompanied by feelings of despair and helplessness over one's inability to keep pace with the rest of society. Paul's comments on how the seasons influence a prisoner's sense of time's passing are noteworthy. He viewed summer as the worst season, the inverse of many a free person's notion, but one that makes perfect sense within the confines of prisons. He cited the stuffy, oppressive heat, and the much longer days during summer. Time seems to stretch out, a desirable quality when enjoying oneself on vacation. However, given a prisoner's main objective while serving time is to collapse it as quickly as possible, anything that does the inverse is, understandably, not welcomed. In winter, by 1700 hours it is already dark: to an inmate, the day is done. One begins preparing psychologically for the escape of sleep. Being locked up while it is still light out, on the other hand, exacerbates one's feeling of confinement: "And then you also feel like you're missing out on a lot more." Recalling the times Paul spent in segregation he described how, after about a month, commonplace tasks such as urinating or taking a meal became filled with significance. To most people, these moments are uneventful breaks in a hectic day. Removed from the petty routines of normal life, awareness of bodily functions can take on a preternatural sensitivity. Jimmy Boyle (1977) described how, in segregation, he developed the ability to hear conversations and smell the guards' leather boots from great distances. Contiguous with this heightening of bodily senses, time seems to slow down. 121 Paul's description recalled sensations experienced under the influence of marijuana, or the writings of mystics. Continued deprivation of normal distractions can sharpen the significance of events to such a degree that these small moments are anticipated as ways of marking the passing of time. Paul's own experience as consumer of narcotic drugs has likely influenced his perceptions, even during those times when he was not using drugs (see also Cheek & Laucius, 1971). He told me he counsels other inmates in alternative ways of dealing with time, including the practice of meditation, as a way of managing the effects of their sentences. Asked to conceptualize a metaphor of time, both Paul and Frank came up without an answer. I posed the question with little understanding of its difficulty to non-literary specialists. Paul, in an effort to define it, suggested it was like spirit or energy: in other words, intangible in its essence, but obvious in its manifest effects. Frank's answer was less positive: he described time as a big void, and redirected his answer to talk about how, with each passing year, he feels he is losing his connection with normal society. His resignation apparent in his voice, his answer suggested the anachronic perspective in Gioscia's (1971) article. Neil's answer to my question took the form of three speeds and/or quantities of time: looking ahead, future time seems very long; looking back, past time/time as history passes quickly; present time seems to last forever. For Frank, the best time of the day, morning, was also the slowest. This optimistic sounding paradox may have been an attempt to gloss over a comment he made a moment earlier, "If I'm not doing anything, [time] really drags." I had the impression that Frank wished to present a more positive, 'normal' portrait than what he felt himself to be. To another question, what time period would he like to live in, if he could, he snapped, "Now." Later, speaking of his plans for when he will be released, he mentioned early retirement on a friend's farm, raising hens and using his hobbies to generate a small income. He concluded, "I'm gonna get back to the sixties. I'm just gonna love it." Frank reminded me that time passes most quickly when sleeping. He seemed to express no 122 preference for this situation, unlike a number of inmate students, Sean among them, who appeared to drift out of consciousness with little effort: such was my astonishment when I first worked as a substitute teacher at the eastern Ontario institution, that I suspected many inmates suffered from narcolepsy. While Frank may have been straightforward in his paradoxical remark about his favorite time of day, his other comments regarding the pleasure he has with his duties and people he meets in the course of a day, suggested otherwise. One of Gary Wyatt's reminiscences, once removed, of a writing instructor who had returned to a lower mainland institution after twelve years, eerily recalled Mann's tuberculosis asylum in The Magic Mountain (1976). The teacher found, upon returning to the institution, that except for one inmate, the class was identical to the one he had left twelve years previously. The men nonchalantly picked up their writing portfolios as though he had been away for no more than a week. Gioscia's anachrony, the sense of time slowing to a near stop in some individuals and societies, seems to be in evidence. Effects of Prisonization Without prodding, I found some examples of the negative effects of long-term imprisonment, or prisonization, in some of the remarks and attitudes expressed by Paul and Frank. Paul sounded extremely bitter over the fact that he had been sentenced to twelve years, of which he served eleven and a half, for a non-violent crime. He was released and, presumably, is now serving time for acting on the rage and the skills he developed during his incarceration, to rob banks. To mentally prepare himself for his assault, he would visualize the bank staff as the guards who had forcibly detained him for so many years. He admitted that spending fifteen years or so in prison "...does fuck you up in here, being in here... you get bitter...." His anachronic distress, the problems he has had with modern technology, with feeling out of synchronicity with society, has only fueled his anger. 123 Frank expressed a milder sense of similar dread, and wondered aloud if he might be so institutionalized that he may not be able to function in the outside world. While admitting he hated being locked away, he felt it was getting easier to serve his time, because he has done so much of it. Nearing forty at the time of our interview, Frank had been in and out of institutions since the age of seven. Part of his success on the outside, he feels, depends upon his ability to market his hobby skills, either as a producer of crafts, or a teacher to others. Combined with the management of his behaviour, Frank has hopes that he will remain out of trouble upon his release. He identifies his improved skills as patience and compassion, as well as hand-eye coordination and mechanical skills. Colin mentioned, one evening as we were putting materials away, that he found his practice of arts and crafts was a method of resistance of the effects of life within prison. As he told me this after class has finished, I had no chance to engage him further: another lost opportunity. Inmates' World As with any culture, the world of prisoners is composed of a collection of individuals. The capricious nature of their fate, being thrown together by judicial and sentencing procedures, nonetheless reveals some common elements. These elements consist, often, of shared backgrounds, as well as acquired characteristics as a result of their forced community. This last section addresses the inmates' admissions of personal choices, past experiences and learning, and other behaviors which collectively suggest the existence of an inmate ethos. At the same time, the responses and unsolicited comments that I witnessed reflect the values of individuals. By setting them within one framework I hope to maintain the sense of distinctness that each inmate demonstrated in an environment that encourages conformity and none but the coarsest sensitivities. The following 124 subsections are used to investigate these distinctions and trace any shared characteristics: knowledge and mentoring, inmate inagery and values, and ethos. Knowledge and Mentoring One of the presumptions about prisoners I held, that they shared a mostly dysfunctional formal education, was modified by the discovery of the vast amount of learning that these men had acquired and of which they continued to avail themselves in prison. Through compulsory courses in behavior management, many had developed a sophisticated vocabulary of psychology that would rival that of an undergraduate majoring in this discipline: Doug suggested I suffered from "attention deficiency syndrome", when I complained of boredom with one video program. Another inmate, Joe, alerted me to the subtle skills of 'emotion reading', through studying another person's body language, facial expression, voice control and so on, that inmates develop from the many self-improvement programs they are encouraged to take. More than once, Joe commented on whether my interaction with another inmate was assertive or not. As well, it is not uncommon to find prisoners, through correspondence and distance education, working on an undergraduate degree. Beside these formal avenues of learning are the informal ones: mentoring took place in many crafts, and was, as far as I could determine, a more significant method of skills transference than any techniques taught by outsiders. Sean aquired the ability to shade his drawing through watching and asking another inmate on his cell block. Leatherwork, taught from inmate to inmate, is one of the most popular crafts in prison. Joe told me about the leatherwork he practiced, when I complimented him on the fine cap he was wearing. As I had guessed, it was one of his creations, but in his view, not his best. He had stitched it together from five pieces; together they formed a braid which traversed the front, forming a bridge between the skull cap and brim. The handiwork was prodigious. He told me 125 without a trace of boasting that he sells his work out of the Visitor Control area, which displays samples of his and other inmates' crafts. Neil's facility with the yam printmaking and collage sessions indicated a strong aptitude for the graphic arts. He was unwilling to share his educational background, however, during the few opportunities we had for co-operative discussion. While his talent in these areas seemed innate, it did not translate into the more complex medium of linocut. With other art media he showed some difficulty: a tempera painting exercise proved too much. With little experience using wet media (so I gathered), he quickly mixed a mess of brown sludge, and his brush was frequently overloaded with paint. He and Joe told me proudly they knew about Emily Carr, during a slide-viewing session of Canadian art: they had visited her house, now a historic site, in Victoria. As with any adult leisure activity, the inmates who chose to enroll in the art course came with a variety of backgrounds, strengths and interests in art. The questionnaire I distributed early in the course turned up a surprising experience with art and cultural exhibitions. Of five respondents (Frank, Neil, Colin, Rick and Sean), only one inmate, Frank, showed a previous interest with arts and crafts: he had done leatherwork, beading and woodcrafts, among other unspecified hobbies. Sean and Colin had had some experience with car detailing and bodywork. Neil's impatience with foreign media and his own working habits sometimes got the better of him: if a process did not come easily, he would abandon it quickly. Others, such as Colin and Sean, showed far less natural ability, but a willingness to stay with a process, from which they were able to wrest some level of accomplishment. They showed justifiable pride in their successes. Rick demonstrated some initiative in the area of linocut, chiefly as he owned a fine set of gouges, and had an already-prepared image of the eagle with wings spread. Otherwise, on the sporadic occasions he came to class, his work was indistinguishable from the others'. Abe, who only appeared for the final unit, in linoprint, demonstrated perhaps the most outstanding ability of anybody in the class. He mixed 126 colours together freely, using his fingers to add spots of blue to the red on the brayer, and printed a unique image with each pull. Not satisfied with the amount of pressure we could achieve by hand, he suggested we take the linoleum to the etching press, located in the pottery area of the hobbyshop. Abe's carefree and confident manner with the materials, and his claimed experience with serigraphy and other media, eased my apprehension with his breaking of traditional rules. Unlike Neil, he had the patience and foresight to see his project through to completion. He was able to visualize and render his image quickly, without external aids. Frank, Paul and Neil told me they learned their craft of choice from another inmate, through watching that person working on it, and asking questions. Upon his release from segregation, Paul was impressed with another inmate's stained glass product, a sun-catcher. After learning to make that shape, he moved on to more creative ventures. He would start with a pattern in mind, find an example of the predominant shape (in his example, a bird), then sort through other pattern books for different backgrounds and add them in. Paul emphasized the ritual aspect of this sharing procedure, likening it to passing dope: "You're giving ...something to somebody to make his time go easier." He noted that out of this learning, certain styles of art tend to emerge, depending on which inmate was the mentor: even work habits, such as cleaning up, will reflect this man's approach. Marian and Gary of Prison Arts corroborated Paul's disclosure. They allowed that, while some of the inmates may have known something about a craft, they have an opportunity to develop their skill in that area in prison. Many others arrive in prison with no previous experience. Such is the level of resident expertise that a prospective volunteer artist or artisan in a chosen field is advised to have considerable prowess in that area; otherwise he or she will only be wasting inmates' time, and they will let him or her know it. Active resistance may be encountered from a resident expert who feels his authority challenged by this outsider. 127 Inmate Imagery and Values The inmates' symbolic associations and selection of imagery indicated a set of values that were similar enough to suggest that certain deprivations, particularly of women, motivated their choices. Some responsibility belongs to me: I had selected, for overhead projector transparencies, images of nude or semi-nude women. The traditional predominance of the female form in books on life drawing presupposes a male heterosexual bias which I did nothing to resist. It was therefore hardly surprising to find Neil and Sean taking liberties with an image of a bare-topped woman in a crouched position. They had indicated one nipple in dark, sharply delineated charcoal. I pointed out the discrepancy between their version and the original, which only suggested the nipple with a faint smudge. While they giggled Jabhar rose to their defense: "You have to understand, we don't see a lot of women in here." Jabhar's earlier remark regarding his perception of the vagina shape became poignmantly clear. For the enlargement exercise, Neil chose a photograph from the magazine Flash Art, showing a middle-aged woman suckling a young boy of indeterminate age, perhaps 13, and waved it about the class for shock value. Eventually he settled for a safer image, of a seated woman facing a wall of red bricks. Sean chose a detail of a woman's crotch, from an underwear advertisement in Cosmopolitan. Despite my expressed approval, he switched to an image of a woman in jeans and jacket with a barnboard background. The model's pose and expression suggested she was about to fling open her jacket and reveal her breasts. Sean decided aloud to concentrate on her upper torso (I had told them to select a detail from their chosen images) and so saying, took a pair of scissors and snipped away the woman's head and lower body. Even though this was only a photograph, Sean's sudden and casual objectification of the female form disturbed me. Other inmates showed no particular sexual imagery in their selections. Colin and Satyajit, both openly religious, chose innocuous images: Satyajit selected a reproduction of a still life by Cezanne, while Colin chose a photograph I had taken of a 128 wheat field in Washington state. Jabhar was taken by a reproduction of Fuseli's A Lion Attacking a Horse. Was his own religious fervour (for Islam) reflected in his choice of this noble king of the beasts? Frank disappeared before long, a habit he seemed to indulge with greater frequency as the course wore on. Eventually he withdrew from the course, but remained on hand to help move materials and join us whenever I was bringing something in that interested him, such as the videotape on Surrealism. Later he told me he preferred to spend his time working on his leathercraft. Cultural and religious values emerged during the discussion of colour symbolism. Colin made the gender association of the colour blue, masculine, to which I offered the alternative, feminine construct of the color of the Virgin Mary. To my assertion that blue represented a passive state, Satyajit countered that within Sikh religion, blue is the colour of the warrior's turban. "So if you see me wearing a blue turban, look out!" he joked. Jabhar's vigilant manner surfaced in the discussion over the colour black. His African-American background might have sensitized him to the term I suggested, 'black magic', in pointing out its pejorative meaning and "Eurocentric bias" (his words). Colin was, typically, the most candid in speaking of his own values and beliefs. His religious persuasion, Roman Catholicism, appeared to anchor him, and give him a sense of hope pending his release: he had plans to work as a caretaker at the parish church of the visiting Catholic pastor. Noticing the UBC letterhead on the consent forms, he asked me if I knew of the theological college there. He knew the Jesuits were a teaching order, and wished to take some courses in religious studies. He wore as many as three rosaries at any time around his neck, and indicated on the questionnaire that his artistic inspiration came from religious experiences, of which he has had several since his incarceration. During a discussion about dreams, in relation to the Surrealists, Colin asked me what I meant by my claim that there was no such thing as a moral dream. He had had dreams which he felt at the time were moral. I told him this came from Freud's theory of the unconscious, or id. To appease him, I added that within most religious traditions, 129 dreams play a significant role in the communication of messages from the spirit world. Colin appeared relieved, adding that some dreams we can control; therefore they are not really happening in the unconscious at all. Colin left one class early to attend a memorial service for another inmate who had died in prison. When he returned, fifteen minutes before the end of class, he was disappointed to find it was too late to resume his painting. After Colin in the extent of self-disclosure was Sean. He presented a potpourri of desires in his collage: pretty women, yachts, racing cars, fine wine, exotic travel locations, and spiffy clothes. These are the things he wishes for, but cannot enjoy, inside the joint'. I remarked how such images are the stock in trade of advertising: if we buy these commodities, we will be happy. Intrigued, Sean related how money represented for him so much of his time, his labour. We carried on this quasi-Marxist discussion for several minutes. Another time, he ventured to speak about his tattoos. Both his forearms are heavily decorated by an inmate tattoo artist. His aesthetic choices over body decoration included having both his nipples pierced He mentioned insightfully that one's occupation determines to a large extent just how far one can go with a personalized style: the degree of public/social interaction will influence one's freedom of dress. Later in the course Sean expressed a desire to have his tattoos removed, especially the one on his left arm, which showed a grim Father Time-like skeleton brandishing a sickle, a la Iron Maiden, the heavy metal rock group. His other tattoo, which he preferred, showed a more benign figure, a kind of wizard, with a medieval castle in the background. Sean told me he would approach the tattoo artist to see whether he would agree to an informal interview. Given the illicit status of tattooing in prisons, Sean could not promise anything. Rick showed little commitment to the art course; although his attendance was sporadic, he remained to the end, and would freely offer his opinions on the relative value of kinds of art. As well as leaving to attend his lifers' meetings, he often missed all or part of a class to take advantage of the fine summer weather to play softball. He proudly told 130 me his hometown in the prairies has a reputation for athletic ability, chiefly in baseball, hockey and curling. It is the home of at least two famous sportsmen, one of whom plays for the Pittsburgh Penguins. Asked about intramural team sports in prison, he assured me there was no movement of teams from one prison to another, although this prison boasted four baseball teams. Rick told me there was a good deal of talent in the institution, most of which went toward lucrative ends such as tattooing. One man, he told me, is an incredible draughtsman, but has no use for paper: only human skin inspires him! An ex-inmate, a Native artist, has a solid reputation, but is handicapped by an anger control problem: he once destroyed a painting worth $5,000.00 in a fit of rage. Rick measured artworks in terms of their monetary value. A couple of exercises he disparaged, saying, "If you can't sell it, what good is it?" His own woodcarvings, predominantly from carefully-rendered line drawings of wildlife, fetched as much as $2,500.00, as he indicated on his questionnaire. A latecomer to the art course, Abe provided me with one of the most original and expressive art pieces of any inmate there. His linoprint shows a man in profile, from the shoulderst up, with his hands at the side of his face. His mouth is stretched open as if screaming (Figure II, page 131). Above and across from him, in the upper left corner, is the hand of God (Abe's explanation), pointing down like the hand in Michelangelo's Creation of Adam. Rays of light fan out from this corner, cross-cut with smaller, lighter marks from lower left to upper right. The image has great emotional force. I told Abe it reminded me of Munch's The Scream, which he did not know. When I said how it must be satisfying to him, having other men approach him to help them draw designs, for tattoos and so on, He began, "I tell you, it's about the only - Yea, it gives a good feeling, that's for sure." 131 F i g u r e II: A b e ' s L i n o l e u m P r i n t For Neil, the primary benefit of art making in prison was "staying away from trouble, problem-causing behaviour, bad elements, and drugs." For Frank, "'s kept me in touch with the human side of myself." Asked what kinds of images inspired them, Frank and Neil played it safe. Frank said he liked to make 'soft', non-threatening images, things that made one feel good, but not cartoons. Neil said scenery, mountains and water appealed to him. Neil got his ideas from his thoughts or fantasies, while Frank turned to magazines, especially Workshop. Both had plans to continue some form of craft after they were released. Frank wished to continue teaching his hobby therapy program. Paul approached art from a more sociopolitical perspective. In a long, discursive talk he mentioned how artists are at the vanguard of society, acting as social lightning rods, and often getting into trouble with the dominant power. He tended to discount his crimes by identifying with political prisoners from the past, many of whom were poets, citing a radical movement, 'The Revolution of the Poets', that was based in Nicaragua. For him, as for Frank, self-expression was more important than technique, although he did not discount the value of the latter. Inmate Ethos By parsing the comments and behaviors of the inmates in this way I am asserting that there is an unwritten code of behaviors, norms of interaction that inmates are loathe to reveal to all but the most trusted allies, other inmates. Of course, I made very few inroads into this esoteric language. What follows are hints, suggestions of a system of communication, information transfer and code of ethics that rivals the most secret societies of our western world. Frequently, the rivalries and tensions between different gangs in prisons will erupt in violence. These situations are often sparked by one gang member trespassing, often unawares, on the sacred ground of another's value system. As an example, to insult another inmate with the word 'goof is an invitation to a fight. In free society, the epithet would hardly cause a second glance. 133 The inmates' high regard for staff punctuality tokened no show of reciprocation on their part: this double standard seemed to present no problem to the inmates, but was taken as a matter of hard-won privilege. Each evening as I was setting up, I waited with anxiety until, as if by some mental transfer, a full complement of men appeared, drifting in as quietly as lint on the air. Joking to Jabhar one evening that I missed him at the previous class, he retorted, "I was here but you weren't!" referring to the class I missed for want of a vehicle. Speaking to me about tattooing, Sean was explicit in describing the contraband methods the tattoo artists would use: a 'walkman' type tape player was taken apart, and the motor used to provide the pump mechanism. The needle could be as simple as a piece of guitar wire. Many prison staff may already know about these details; for me they had the currency of covert information. When I asked him how this kind of illicit activity becomes known inside prison, he shrugged and said, "I dunno. It just gets around. It doesn't take long in here." His words recalled the reply of one inmate when I asked him to advertise my upcoming art course to his mates, "Don't worry. Word travels fast around here." And long before, at a minimum security institution in eastern Ontario, one of the teachers there briefed me on the concept of collective consciousness as applied to the prison environment. During a later conversation, Sean discounted his tattoos, saying if he could he would have them removed. He told me he received his first one when he was fourteen. When he sent a tattoo artist over to speak with me, as he had promised, I was ill-prepared, unfortunately. Sean, Neil and I had just broken off our interview regarding the nature of the art course, my 'hidden agenda', and I was distraught and angry. In walked the tattoo artist to the hobbyshop. He seemed as uncomfortable being there as I felt, and I had no questions prepared to ask him. To make matters worse, we had no privacy. The entire meeting was over in less than a minute. My coveted entry into their private world ended before it even began. 134 Colin's equivocal status with the other inmates - his 'uncool' religiosity, and his tendency to break rank by supporting me in minor differences with inmates such as Jabhar, may have been clues to the reason he stopped attending the art classes without warning: perhaps he wished to go into hiding, in segregation. Often an inmate will choose this course if there's pressure on him to fight, if he owes money for drugs, or for any other reason he may have to fear for his life. Colin's disappearance without warning was one of the biggest mysteries during the course, for if I ever felt I had one ally, it was he. He and Satyajit were the only inmates ever to excuse themselves when they had to leave a class early, or miss a future one. Mistakes in visitor-inmate relations would have continued to be made, had I fulfilled my intention of operating the course to its end. Had somebody overheard the remark I had made to Susan, in confidence, in the presumed safety of the hobbyshop office, about Colin? If so, did that compel him to deny me further access into his interior world? My error of remonstrating with Juan, embarrassing him in front of his mates, has been documented. If the word 'goof has so much power, how grave was my oversight? Perhaps another book should be made available to incoming staff and guest workers, a manual of appropriate behavior and language when working with prisoners. Gary Wyatt confirmed my uncertainties with these issues, assuring me that it is very difficult to figure out an inmate. One never knows what are the underlying issues. Internal politics, family obligations (many inmates are under pressure to produce crafts as a viable source of income) and other invisible factors can undercut the novice art teacher's best intentions. A l l newcomers have to learn the hard way, making mistakes as they go. With luck they will learn what works, and be prepared to discard what does not. Frank's advice for newcoming teachers in prisons is most sound: I think you just have to come right out and say, 'You know I don't care what you guys are in here for, you know we're all human beings in here and we're all here to learn, we're supposed to have fun',... Try and open up some kind of dialogue that way on a human level. You know on a human level. 135 Chapter Five: Reflections and Recommendations Time and Prisonization: Prison as Haven or Hell In his insightful roman a clef, Darkness at Noon , based on the arrests and imprisonment of Soviet party loyalists under the Stalinist regime of the 1930s, Arthur Koestler (1941) introduces an old prisoner, nicknamed Rip van Winkle for obvious reasons. After spending twenty years in solitary confinement, this minor character is released, and two weeks later is re-incarcerated. This individual is so mystified by his changed world that he cannot function in it. Completely institutionalized and half mad, he takes refuge in the prison, awaiting death. I began this search for an understanding into the long-term effects of incarceration, particularly, how inmates made sense of their world, how they perceived time, and what impact the practice of art has on those perceptions. From my brief intervention/study, it would be impossible to suggest a direct cause-and-effect relationship between inmates' experiences of time and the effects of art immersion on those experiences, given the small sample of volunteers with whom I worked. Frank and Paul, and, to a lesser extent, Neil (he was the youngest inmate student), showed definite signs of stress as a result of their incarceration. To conclude that this stress resulted from forcing them into a monochronic environment, supposedly conflicting with their poly chronic orientation, would be extravagant. Most of the men in the art class showed a surprising internalization of the strict routines of prison structure, with an important proviso: While they adhered to, and appeared to respect, the externally imposed monochronic structure, their attitude to it seemed less than 'convert-like.' As with Robby (Wideman, 1984), their adaptation might be a concession to the greater power structure that surrounds them: allowing the 'screws' and other staff to dictate these external routines in exchange for a small measure of peace. As Robby learned, active resistance requires certain bargaining chips. The inmates I taught appeared to follow such matters as mealtimes, lockdowns, and program hours, with little complaint, while at the same time, showing an indifference to the habits and customs of the 136 truly 'monochronized.' Even when they had prepared lists of things to do on a given day, nobody carried a timetable, as their own daily agendas were predetermined. They expected this adherence to prison time from me, as a volunteer, and showed remarkable lack of understanding for the contingencies outside that can effect punctuality. Perhaps this is significant: did they lose so much contact with the free world that they forgot it does not operate according the chronometric model of prisons? If so, could this be evidence of a breakdown of their own internal (polychronic?) orientations? These men, in their passive adaptation to the monochronic prison routine, might have been demonstrating evidence of institutionalization. This condition showed itself most obviously in the attitudes and conduct of Frank and Paul. Frank initially struck me as a depressed individual. His tired eyes gave no sense of joy or hope; on the contrary, they communicated a deep loss. In speaking with me, he seemed resolved to the severed ties with his family (his only remaining contact was with his mother); Frank emanated a musky body odor that never left him, perhaps to keep other inmates physically and emotionally at a distance. Having experienced one loss, was he avoiding the possibility of others? Yet his day-to-day activities suggested he had adapted to his environment with some success. Frank appeared intent on assuring me that his personality had improved through residing in a series of confining institutions, intermittently, since the age of seven. He mentioned how he kept mentally active by helping other inmates with their hobbies, and designing his hobby therapy course. He restricted his concern for those inmates working on their hobbies; he had no use for other social activities such as team sports. His conduct with me was always civil, even subordinate. Frank's adaptation to his environment suggests the professional prisoner, one who has more or less given up on the possibility of reintegration in society and turned his focus inward (Cohen & Taylor, 1972; Duguid, 1996; Koestler, 1941). Several of Mann's (1976) House Berghof residents, including his protagonist Hans Castorp, demonstrate this 137 aversion to free society. I wondered whether Frank truly believed, as he wistfully expressed, that he could "get back to the sixties." Like Frank, Paul appears to have not only made the best of his situation, but to have gone to an extreme rejection of free society's diurnal schedule. Paul's preference for his own cell, working into the early hours of morning on his writing, suggested a monk-like devotion to his craft. Neither Paul nor Frank could easily be identified as having a 'polychrome' temporal orientation, although Paul's tendency to use narcotic drugs such as heroin would suggest, as with this orientation, an alternative to the fast-paced, linear sequencing of events typical of the monochronic orientation. According to Cheek and Laucius (1971), narcotics users describe a slowing-down, or even stopping of time, as one of the drugs' effects. Long-term users show difficulty functioning in a regular temporal mode. Whether Paul was still procuring narcotics in prison - and given the reputation of this institution, the possibility is not remote - his advocacy of other temporal and consciousness shifting techniques (among which, meditation and writing were prominent), reveals his unique ability to manage the time of his sentence. Paul's lifestyle might pose little hardship to one who is safely contained within a medium-maximum security penitentiary, with the caveat of having access to illicit drug use. The difficulty lies in Paul's (and other long-term prisoners') attempts at reintegration into society. Paul found himself a stranger in his own land, and acted out his resentment and bitterness with society for his stolen years by stealing from society. I am oversimplifying in order to make a point, but Paul's truncated life, which spurred him to react in the violent manner he did, should not be minimized. Central to Paul's rage was his feeling of being out of synchrony with the rate at which the rest of the world had advanced. Gioscia (1971) describes the 'catachronic' individual as being in a mental prison, one for whom time weighs heavily, and who - not incidentally - has frequent recourse to narcotics in order to escape, momentarily, this condition. For the person suffering from catachrony, the 'epichronic' realm presents an attractive escape. Time in each instance appears to move 138 with the same slow rate; the difference is that with the former, one feels 'under' time; in the latter, one is 'above' time. Mystical states such as samadhi are similarly described as conditions of timelessness (Sekida, 1987). Zen Buddhism stresses the awareness of a continual present that is achieved via complete psychological absorption in the moment; during this condition the reflective, temporally conscious ego is forgotten. Such states are known to most of us: during intense engagement in any activity, whether writing an exam or rescuing a drowning person, there is no past or future, only the immediate present. Art as Psychic Resistance The other dimension of my enquiry - what effect, if any, art making had on prisoners' experience of time - was not rendered transparent as a result of this study. If anything, my pedagogical hubris was most evident in the claim I had made, that prisoners' lives would be notably improved with the introduction of any art program. Still, certain of the inmates indicated they chose to work with their art or hobby projects as a method of sustaining resistance to the pressures of life behind bars: Colin mentioned he used art a form of resistance (his word), and Doug told me he was aware of how art activity helps him forget about the passage of time. This 'conscious forgetting' is a useful state of consciousness, given the fact that a prisoner's greatest enemy is the imposition of time (Cohen & Taylor, 1972; Wideman, 1986). The testimonies of Frank and Paul, concerning their uses of hobbies in prison, also lend support to opportunities for art making in prison. Resistance to Art Courses Art programs in prisons are not received with categorical enthusiasm: many inmates showed indifference to the exercises I introduced, and the general decline in enrollment strongly suggests that what will engage one group of learners might just as quickly be rejected by another, for reasons that remain mysterious. As Gary Wyatt and Marian Otterstrom concurred, "You just never know what works." In this respect art is no 139 different from other disciplines, inmates no different from other students. A medium that appeals to one person may induce considerable frustration or anxiety in another. Some of the resistance I encountered resulted from my lack of understanding, or appreciation, for the considerable knowledge that these men possessed. They in turn may have sensed an academic lack of regard, on my part, for their street wisdom, their life experiences and their value system, especially the kinds of art they valued. A kind of impasse can result; neither side willing to concede to the other. Lather (1991) has broached the issue of learner resistance, imploring educators to listen to alternative constructions of knowledge, and ways of learning. Certainly more background in the principles and praxis of adult education would have helped me. One of my earliest disappointments in offering the art course gratis was the lack of respect I sensed, for the course (and, consequently, for me as the instructor), on the part of the administration and the inmates. Most of the inmates showed little regard for their own punctuality, arriving when it suited their convenience, and leaving before the end of class if they chose (Satyajit and Colin were the exceptions in this respect). What I had failed to grasp was the fundamental difference in status that my course received, compared with the art course I taught, for credit, at the eastern Ontario facility the previous year. In essence, the staff at the second site perceived me as a nuisance, an additional distraction in their busy day, and a potential security threat. In conversation, Stephen Duguid drew my attention to this ongoing problem whenever one teaches adult, as opposed to higher, education: The former situation would describe the art course I gave at the lower mainland facility, or any leisure activity. Payment for a course does not appear to be as significant a factor in winning the respect of the students, as whether the course has the potential to contribute to a degree or diploma. The latter situation, higher education, would describe the eastern Ontario prison art program. There my status as a licensed teacher was recognized; my opinion was called upon during the meetings we held for inmate promotions, graduation and pay scale 140 reviews. An indicator of inmate-student respect, attendance was compulsory: chronic lateness and absenteeism could result in a reduction or suspension of pay, or even expulsion from the course. Compared with the regular course offerings, art and music (offered only for five weeks a year) were seen as privileges: only those inmates who demonstrated previous experience with art or music, and a keen desire to participate, were allowed into the course. A course of art that evolved within a regular school timetable was introduced into a leisure situation. One model, designed for a more predictable structure than one encounters in leisure time, is juxtaposed with another: problems of fit are inevitable. Recommendations for Teaching as a Volunteer Activity Teaching in a volunteer capacity demands the suspension of practices one might normally value highly. In general, the idea that these inmates knew a great deal about their situation, as well as about art and hobby activities, needs to be respected and accepted on the same level of importance, if one expects to gain even a provisional acceptance. Only with inmate acceptance can one expect to make more than a temporary and grudging impression on their lives. The need to recognize that research subjects are fully aware of their situation has only recently been addressed in postmodern research (Lather, 1991). With that, one's sense of importance, as sort of a herald of intellectual or political freedom, is qualified. I had certain preconceptions, based on my understanding of life in captivity, from the little reading and previous experience I had working with inmates. One of those preconceptions was that my role as a volunteer researcher/teacher would have a liberating effect on their consciousness. However arrogant it appears, I would posit that this claim is one of the implicit understandings, however false, that the teaching profession in general does little to criticize 141 Mentoring From my immersion in the site, I was privileged to witness examples of tendencies showing how inmates learn, through the transference of skills: watching, asking questions, while the expert in the craft silently goes about his or her business. Marian Otterstrom pointed out how important it is that teachers of any craft be well-versed and highly skilled; otherwise they are wasting the inmates' time. It is useful to recall Laing's account (Carrel & Laing, 1982) of plying her clay sculpture, without otherwise interacting with the wary inmates at Barlinnie prison; at least one inmate, Jimmy Boyle, following her example, began his own experiments with this novel medium. His successful reformation of his identity through sculpture is legendary. If mentoring has more validity in prisons than stand-up lecturing (see also Riches, 1994), what implications does this form of learning have for regular schools? Gardner (1991) addresses the significance of this traditional method of skills transference, pointing to its renewed practice and increasing acceptance in European trade guilds. Are teachers aware of the perpetuation of power relations implicit in the traditional lecture-style method of instruction (Friere, 1970; Lather, 1991)? Prison inmates are only too aware of, and will challenge at any moment, the self-proclaimed expert, as soon as his or her 'expertise' appears to threaten the inmate's sense of autonomy. How many of the transgressions that inmates have perpetrated have stemmed from a fundamental mistrust of, and resentment toward, the powered classes? Within this mindset lies perhaps a failure of schools to address the perpetuation of a class system via inappropriate propagation of values and attitudes from one class (that represented by teachers, the ones in power), onto certain students. To give a concrete example, a student I taught for years in a regular high school in Ontario, was Cree. His community lived, not on a reserve, but in a 'reserved' area of town, a mobile-home park, shared by other lower-income families and individuals. Besides showing an indifference to my preference for modernist, formalist art methods, this young man lived a semi-nocturnal lifestyle, one which resulted in his missing half of 142 the classes in art, due to the school's incomprehensible rotating timetable. In spite of his astonishing talent, according to the letter of the curriculum, he was deemed a failure, not only in my class, but with the school in general. My hunch was, it was the system that had failed him, not the other way around. Of note in this context, Native inmates have a much harder time adjusting to the monochronic routines imposed by prison structure than other inmates (Duguid, 1997). Teachers in any setting need to adapt quickly to the needs and interests of the student body they serve. Nowhere is this fact more apparent than in the prison. With a voluntary, leisure art program adaptability is paramount: often inmates will have a better idea than the ingenue art teacher as to what projects are impractical, or logistically unfeasible. The hobbycraft officer who refused to pose (draped) for the inmates did so out of an awareness of the political realities there. At other times, inmates' expectations of what an art teacher might do need to be exposed to cultural sensitivities: I told Neil and Steve that I could not teach Native art, for the fact that I was not Native, and would not feel comfortable disseminating ideas and symbols from a culture to which I did not belong. My lack of expertise in other areas also formed a prohibition to some of the skills that the inmates wished to learn. At frequent junctures I felt my aims with this art program were at cross-purposes with those of the inmates: where I wanted to inculcate in the inmates a fresh way of seeing and responding to their environment, they wanted to learn or develop skills in tried and true, and preferably marketable, media. I refused to give up what I considered (and still do) a more valuable purpose and rationale of art and art instruction. Our opposing attitudes informed much of the dialogue that ensued; in the frequent differences of opinion, perhaps the men perceived my stance as arrogant or classist. I can offer no easy solution to this potential impasse. Much of my identity as an art teacher is predicated upon the belief that / know better, and it is my purpose here to teach you what I know. While the arrogance of this statement is all too clear, there needs to be some way of reconciling the strong wills of 143 instructors and adult, inmate students. Perhaps by laying out one's values early on, so that each side understands better where the other is situated, a more equitable and cooperative spirit might reign in the art room. Part of the difficulty lies in unearthing the extremely deep-rooted, personal values that are tapped when called to answer the fundamental question^/za? is art for? Posing this question to (inmate) students may be as good a point of departure as any at the beginning of a course in art. The Joy of Participation A l l of the above is not to deny a possibility of resolution or success. Not all participants in the art course had specific projects in mind, hoping to find a market for them. Some had one purpose, to pass their time enjoyably. Inmates such as Colin and Satyajit bent their art works toward religious ends: it was Satyajit's aim to construct a papier-mache Sikh temple. Colin averred that religious experiences informed his art imagery. For all men, at certain times oppositions gave way when all were quietly engaged in the process of art making. These moments occurred too seldom. When they did, separation between teacher and student, inmate and freeman, broke down. Issues of authority and active resistance shifted to background; the process of making art was foregrounded. In a volunteer situation, where evaluation is moot, this aspect of instruction is vital: the regular school art teacher will use these quiet times judiciously, to mark assignments or prepare for the next day's classes. In a setting where the students are already highly sensitized to one's presence, any opportunity to merge with them should be gratefully accepted and acted upon (provided one is not putting oneself at undue risk). For the qualitative researcher hoping to put into practice the worthy concept of participant-observer, these moments are invaluable. Even should the data gathering be reduced during these situations, a foundation of trust is being established that is worth more than the lost pages of potential notes. This trust takes careful nurturing to sustain. 144 The Problem of Criticism Except where expressly invited, I would caution against any but the most practical kinds of criticism. By practical I refer to those problems that arise in the procedure/s of art making. Unless the art course has an academic value attached with it, the issue of criticism in a volunteer course is moot. Inmates will, to a person, resent the implication of a personal attack, a criticism of their worth as people, regardless of the intensity of focus one brings to bear upon the work itself. Many of the inmates' histories include personal criticism and abuse - from parents, from school teachers and administrators, from the various members of the judicial procedures; hence their tendency to take criticism personally. Attempting any form of criticism of their work, however well-intentioned, is fraught with peril. One stands to destroy more than the tenuous bonds of trust with an inmate. Rather, any commentary should arise only when asked for, and then, should be expressed in the subtlest terms: having ascertained that an inmate-student desires help, or feedback about a piece, it is useful to listen to his or her 'other' voice, the tone of feeling, any indication of dissatisfaction with her or his progress. Asking them how they feel about the work, what they think it needs, and so on, puts the solution in their hands, empowering them to take control of their own problems and find their own solutions. Action research presents a viable model for constant and regular self- and program-monitoring. While it did not comprise part of my research methodology at this institution, I have had the opportunity to use it with another group of adult learners: while not all students presented a unanimous voice at that time, the response strongly indicated the students' ability to isolate key concerns. The presentation of this opportunity for feedback has its dangers: some students, under cover of anonymity, overstated the case, which caused me some grief. I would recommend that students append their names as a way of taking responsibility for their criticisms. For two of the inmates I interviewed after the end of the course, of significance were my emotional honesty and interpersonal style of 145 delivery. Content did not appear to be an issue of consequence. Even Neil and Steve's concerns had little to do with the curriculum and much to do with my 'hidden agenda'. To return to my earlier discussion in this chapter, of the ambivalence I felt over my role as a teacher in light of the evidence of more effective learning strategies which I witnessed, perhaps the word 'teacher' needs to be reconsidered. The inmates were fully adept at teaching themselves. What role, what function could I have assumed in order to learn from them, as a researcher? The closest word that comes to mind is 'facilitator.' This word has replaced 'leader' for obvious reasons, in the context of workshops, formal discussions and similar short-term learning situations. It connotes a less authoritarian personage, one who serves rather than governs the participants (another word for which I would replace student, as the latter infers the reciprocal role of teacher, and hence, the dialectical struggle). In a prison environment this distinction is important. Alternatively, one's sense of duty may be seriously challenged as inmates gradually accept their altered status, within the prison culture. Abuses of power are temptingly offered when an inmate's sense of freedom is even marginally broadened: The softer and more pliant personality of a facilitator - as opposed to the 'screws' - may be perceived as weakness. On occasion I felt the treatment I received at the hands of certain inmates amounted to a lack of respect: hard-won gains in personal mobility within the prison environment can reinforce a combative, 'war-zone' mentality; one unfortunate result can be manipulative and inauthentic behaviour (see also Aulich, 1994; Mackie, 1994). However, for the greater body, the inmates were respectful, if guarded. Working with Administrators When Mr. Sandstone told me he thought my research was of no particular value to the institution, he spoke, presumably, from experience and knowledge. What I suggest is intended to form part the literature of interest to readers intent on, or curious about, 146 teaching or researching in long-term facilities in Canada. I take responsibility for any generalizations implied. It would be simplistic to recommend that one's course of action not follow my own. Any alternative approach with staff will not necessarily be an improvement. The aura of mystery surrounding the social development director's decision to cancel the art course, the lack of warning or chance of redress, were, I feel, deliberate. Assuming some truth in the casual remark that Gus, the acting hobbycraft officer made, regarding the staffs perception of my personality, Mr. Sandstone's want of communication with me is at least partly understandable. Some suggestions, notwithstanding, might be: 1) Keep staff informed at all times as to your intentions and progress. If this involves extra effort and unnatural displays of goodwill, it is energy well spent. Staff take an interest in all aspects of prison operation, although not the same interest as one would think; for staff, security issues are paramount. Any information imparted to them alleviates suspicion: as with any of us, it is the unknown that is feared and suspected rather than the known. Insofar as one represents the institution from which you are conducting your research, one is an ambassador of that institution. Inmates are not the only people with long memories. 2) Resist any temptation for altercation with staff. In spite of whatever knowledge and expertise one brings into the prison milieu, the operational procedures of a prison are kept mysterious for a reason: any unnecessary information passed to outsiders may fall into 'enemy' hands (the paramilitary language is appropriate, given the high security, weaponry and hierarchical distribution of responsibility and obedience within this bureaucracy). What information one is privileged to know represents the 'tip of the iceberg.' Rules and decisions that appear arbitrary and even cruel operate out of an internal logic that defies understanding by the uninitiated. As frustrating as some of these decisions will be, in the interest of goodwill and continued access, it is advisable to bear them with equanimity. 3) Draw up a plan and keep to it, for the sake of the staff and the inmates. This last point cannot be over stressed. Prisons depend upon quick communications and coordinated 147 plans: an emergency evacuation - of a single prisoner injured in a fight, or the entire population due to a hostage-taking incident, reinforces the importance of precise spatial and temporal coordinates. Having a relaxed, 'polychrome' attitude to time may be acceptable or even expected within a society of artists. In the tight, monochronic style of prison operation, to which many of the inmates I met had adapted, punctuality is not merely a matter of courtesy; it can, in some instances, mean the difference between safety and personal hazard. A Critique of the Praxis of Research In much of the preceding account I have been aware of, and criticized my presence within the penal institution. Taking an 'epichronic' view, my experience can be understood as part of a critique of the power structure of prisons and my own appropriation of knowledge - with the grudging cooperation of the inmates - in order to wrest some of the answers I came in search of. The classic model of participant observation is highly regarded in the tradition of ethnographic methodology. In my research situation, not finding an existing course of art in which to observe and participate, I had to construct my own. Much of the tension I felt as a researcher, which caused me unnecessary difficulty, had to do with this awareness of my artificial presence among the men. My discomfort erupted at least once, when Neil and Steve thrust me into the unusual role of interviewee. I felt keenly aware of the imbalance of power: as interviewers, Neil and Steve were directing the outcome, probing me with their 'social scientists' lens. As an exercise it formed one of the most profound examples of empathy: What do we mean when we throw questions at willing participants? What are the limits of enquiry, and who gets to determine them? I can no longer act as irresponsible interviewer. Had I been more informed of the alternative strategies that liberatory researchers such as Lather (1991) espouse, I would have had at least a context in which to ground my confusion and suspicion. If I had approached the interview as an exercise, I might have been prepared as well, but the experience would 148 have been diminished. If the preceding account has shown me at fault, as a kind of intruder, or poseur, it is an admission of the artificial, constructed nature of ethnographic research. What I have discovered, then, is not what I sought: one might wonder, how much of what one seeks is ever truly found in ethnographic research? The aforementioned does not discount the value of this research experience, here presented in its loose and rough edges. Fortunately, postmodern research criticism addresses the imbalances of power, and the constructed nature of so-called ethnographic enquiry (Clifford, 1986; Lather, 1991). The documentation of my enquiry is presented here as an 'inconclusion', allowing that the discoveries I made, regarding administrative power structure, and inmate ethos, are valid in themselves. That my intended course did not go according to plan, and these discoveries were not what I had expected to find, in no way diminishes the importance of this research. I do not really wish to conclude and sum up, rounding off the argument so as to dump it in a nutshell on the reader. A lot more could be said about any of the topics I have touched upon.... I have meant to ask the questions, to break out of the frame....The point is not a set of answers, but making possible a different practice....(Kapeller, 1986, quoted in Lather, 1991, p. 159) Suggestions for Theory The nature of enquiry that I embarked upon began as a phenomenological investigation into prison inmates' perceptions of time. What I ended up with was a journey of self-discovery: in experiencing some of the dynamics of prison bureaucracy, through my direct interaction with prison staff, I was compelled to confront - and reconsider -personal values that I had long ago submerged. These values concerned ways of teaching, particularly the power relations implicit in any teaching relationship, as well as values about art. The process of designing a curriculum, for example, implies by definition that decisions are made about what content will be included and excluded. Alternative values are presented when these latter contents return to haunt one, as happened so often with me. Confronted with these 'ghosts', one must somehow accommodate their voices, or be guilty 149 of perpetuating the hierarchical distribution of power that implies: "I'm the teacher, and therefore my opinion has more validity than yours." It would be presumptuous for me to make specific recommendations for educational theory, based upon this relatively brief encounter. The self-reflection in which I was bound to engage was precipitated by the collision and opposition of at least two very different value systems, mine and theirs ('they' understood here as both the inmates and the prison staff). This in itself is significant: my self-understanding was tested (and broadened) more than any specific learning I was able to facilitate with the men. In the spirit of postmodern reflectivity, it is important to keep this process foregrounded when engaging in any research, and research involving human subjects in particular. I can think of no better way of keeping check on one's intentions. Reflectivity renders one's motives transparent, through the exposition of values not otherwise wholly acknowledged. This notion of self-reflectivity invites a new understanding of social research, that is, as a subjective activity, whereby one's feelings and reactions are included as vital and real. With that, the inter-subjectivity lauded by postmodern human research theorists such as Lather (1991) can be implemented. In this way alternative stories and realities are increasingly legitimated and heard. And Finally, a Gala Opening and a Dream Friday, January 24, 1997, evening: A well-heeled and animated crowd is milling around the lobby of the Vancouver Art Gallery. Two dignitaries are welcoming Vancouver's elite to the opening of the exhibition "Pierced Hearts and True Love: a Century of Drawings for Tattoos." Members of the street element - youngsters with hair dyed in shocking hues of ultrablue, sonic yellow and magenta, body piercings, and 'retro' clothing; a burly man with a ponytail and thick, tattoo-covered forearms - jostles with the regular audience, who circumnavigate this colorful admixture with flair. I make a mental note of acquiring a few invitation cards to send to Frank, Paul, Neil, Sean and Colin. The cards' image, of a cobra 150 about to strike, set between a cluster of roses, is from a tattoo drawing in ink on parchment, now weathered and resembling flesh. I wonder if these cards would be considered contraband, as is any Other tattooing paraphernalia in prisons. In a recent dream, I am being searched at the front gate of a penitentiary where I have arrived to teach a course in art. A female guard takes special interest in a book I have brought to show to the inmates, unaware it may pose a risk. The contents of the (textless) book are black and white illustrations: elegant, old-fashioned woodblock or silkscreen prints of knives, pistols and other weapons. I am detained indefinitely.... 151 References Alcoff, Linda (1991). The problem of speaking for others. Cultural Critique, Winter, 5-31. Aulich, Lynn (1994). Fear and loathing: Art therapy, sex offenders and gender. In Marian Liebmann (Ed.), Art therapy with offenders (pp. 135-164). London: Jessica Kingsley. Boyle, Jimmy (1977). A sense of freedom. Edinburgh: Canongate. Caron, Roger (1978). Go Boy!: Memoirs of a lifetime behind bars. Toronto: McGraw-Hill Ryerson. Carrell, Chris & Laing, Joyce (1982). The Special Unit, Barlinnie Prison: Its education through its art. Glasgow: Third Eye Centre. Cheek, Frances and Laucius, Joan (1971). The time worlds of three drug-using groups -alcoholics, heroin addicts, and psychedelics. In Henry Yaker, Osmond Humphrey and Frances Cheek (Eds.), The future of time: Man's temporal environment (pp. 330-347). New York: Doubleday. Cleveland, William (1989). The history of California's Art-In-Corrections program. In Stephen Duguid (Ed.), Yearbook of Correctional Education 1989, 175-191. Burnaby, British Columbia: Simon Fraser Institute for the Humanities. Coakely, Catherine (1990). Creativity in prison. Yearbook of Correctional Education, 7990,105-111. Clifford, James (1986). Partial truths. In James Clifford and George Marcus (Eds.). Writing culture: The politics and poetics of ethnography (pp. 1-26). Berkeley: University of California Press. (1988). The predicament of culture: Twentieth century ethnography, literature, and art. Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press. Cohen, Stanley and Taylor, Laurie (1972). Psychological survival: The experience of long-term imprisonment. Middlesex: Penguin. Congdon, Kristen (1984). Art in jail settings. Art Education 37(2), 10-11. Creswell, John (1994). Research design: Qualitative and quantitative approaches. Thousand Oaks, California: Sage Publications. Duguid, Stephen (1996). Electronic mail correspondence, January. Edwards, Shan (1994). Out of line: art therapy with vulnerable prisoners. In Marian Liebmann (Ed.), Art therapy with offenders (pp. 121-134). London: Jessica Kingsley. Freud, Sigmund (1947). Leonardo: A psychosexual study. New York: Random House. 152 Friere, Paulo (1970). Pedagogy of the oppressed. New York: Seabury Press. Foucault, Michel (1979). Discipline and punish: The birth of the prison. New York: Vintage/Random House. Gardner, Howard (1991). The unschooled mind: How children think and how schools should teach . New York: Basic Books. Garibaldi, Michele & Moore, Mary (1981). The treatment team approach. Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 28-32. Gioscia, Victor (1971). On social time. In Henry Yaker, Osmond Humphrey and Frances Cheek (Eds.), The future of time: Man's temporal environment (pp.73-121). New York: Doubleday. Goldin, Carol and Thomas, Jim (1984). Adult education in correctional settings: Symbol or substance? Adult Education Quarterly 34(3), 123-134. Gorman, Bernard & Wessman, Alden (1977). Images, values and concepts of time. In Bernard Gorman and Alden Wessman (Eds.), The personal experience of time (pp.217-263). New York: Plenum Press. Hall, Edward (1983). The dance of life: The other dimension of time. Garden City, New York: Anchor Press/Doubleday. Hargreaves, Andy (1990). Teachers' work and the politics of time and space. Qualitative Studies in Education 3(4), 303-320. Harris, Ruth (1991). Murders and madness: Medicine, law and society in the fin de siecle. Oxford: Clarendon. Huxley, Aldous (1954). Doors of perception. New York: Harper. Jansen, Golie and Peshkin, Alan (1993). Subjectivity in qualitative research. In Margaret Lescompte, Wendy L. Millroy and Judith Priessle (Eds.), The handbook of qualitative research in education (pp. 681-725). San Diego: Academic Press. Karban, Barbara (1994). Fear and loathing: art therapy, sex offenders and gender. In Marian Liebmann (Ed.), Art therapy with offenders (pp. 165-196). London: Jessica Kingsley. Knights, Wayne (1989). Culture in the bureaucracy: The university in prison. Yearbook of Correctional Education 1989, 61-78. Koestler, Arthur (1941). Darkness at noon. New York: Random House. Kvale, Steinar (1995). The social construction of validity. Qualitative Inquiry 1(1), 19-40. Lancy, David F. (1993). Qualitative research in education: An introduction to the major traditions. New York: Longman. Lather, Patti (1991). Getting smart: Feminist research and pedagogy with/in the postmodern. New York, London: Routledge. 153 Leary, Timothy (1968). The politics of ecstasy. New York: Putnam. Mackie, Barry (1994). Art therapy - an alternative to prison. In Marian Liebmann (Ed.), Art therapy with offenders (pp. 220-249). London: Jessica Kingsley. Mann, Thomas (1969). The magic mountain. New York: Vintage/Random House. McCall, Gail (1981). Leisure restructuring. Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 38-39. McEwen, Douglas & Martinez, Armando (1981). "You can do your time or let your time do you". Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 56-57. Nicolai, Sandra (1981). Rehabilitation and leisure in prisons. Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 33-35. Peaker, Anne & Vincent, Jill (1991). Arts in prisons: Towards a sense of achievement. London: Home Office Research and Planning Unit. Piaget, Jean (1976). A child's construction of reality. London: Routledge & Regan Paul. Piazza, Michael (1997, February). Members only: From the Art Institute to the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center. New Art Examiner 24(5), 32-35. (1996, March). At night in the grand court - a renovation. White Walls, a Journal of Language and Art 95, 36-50. Priestly, J.B. (1968). Man and time. New York: Dell Publishing. Riches, Colin (1994), The hidden therapy of a prison art education programme. In Marian Liebmann (Ed.), Art therapy with offenders (pp. 77-101). London: Jessica Kingsley Sekida, Katsuki (1987). Zen training. New York, Tokyo: John Weatherhill Inc.. Shipman, Marten (1981). The limitations of social research. London: Longman. Skelly, Tom (1992, Winter). On the yard. High Performance 58/59, 32-35. Speckman, Ray (1981). Recreation in prisons - a panacea? Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 46-47. Szekely, George (1982). Art education in correctional settings. Studies in Art Education 24(\), 33-42. Tyler, Stephen (1986). Post-modern ethnography: From document of the occult to occult document. In James Clifford and George Marcus (Eds.), Writing culture: The poetics and politics of ethnography (pp. 122-140). Berkeley, California: University of California Press. 154 Uren, J. (1981). Craft education. In W. Forster (Ed.), Prison education in England and Wales (pp. 100-108). Leicester, U.K.: National Institute of Adult Education (England and Wales). Vincent, Isabel (1996, November). The most powerful thirteen-year-old in the world. Saturday night, 40-50, 138. White, Edmund (1993). Genet: A biography. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. Wideman, John (1984). Brothers and keepers. New York: Holt, Rinehart and Winston. Williams, Ellen (1983). An artist/advocate for the inmate voice. In Steven Hart and Mark Waren (Eds.), The arts in prisons (pp. 93-109). New York: Center for Advanced Study in Theatre Arts. Williams, Larry (1981). Women's correctional recreational services. Journal of Physical Education and Recreation 52(4), 55, 58. Woods, Peter (1986). Inside schools: Ethnography in educational research. London: Routledge and Keagan Paul. 155 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A Appendix I Faculty of Education Department of Curriculum Studies 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6T 1Z4 Tel: (604) 822-5422 Fax: (604) 822-4714 March 5, 1996 To Whom It May Concern: This letter is a request to visit a correctional facility in the Lower Mainland in order to conduct research in the area of art education. I am a Master's student at U.B.C. and the data from this research will be used in my thesis. My interest with prisoners and art stems in part from a five-week pilot study I made at r*************^ Ontario, last summer. I was looking at the effect that an intensive engagement in visual art has on prisoners' self-esteem. One of the surprises that emerged from interviews with two volunteers was the wish they expressed for more time to do their art — both a longer duration for the course, and longer periods of class time. This discovery struck me as somewhat paradoxical, given my assumption that the last thing a prisoner would wish for was more time. It occurred to me that prisoners' sense of time may be qualitatively different from what we, as outsiders, experience. From this and other issues, I have developed the following proposal, to study how prisoners perceive time, and to what extent an immersion in a visual art program affects that perception. Related to this is a secondary issue: to what extent does an immersion in art affect the renegotiation of prisoners' identity? For the purpose of this study, I am seeking a site to offer a course of instruction in art. I would like to involve prisoners as much as possible in the design of the course, in order to allow maximum participation and self-expression. However, as a working theme, I am suggesting using the body as a point of exploration. Students would begin with basic drawing exercises focused primarily on the body, leading through painting, and culminating in three-dimensional constructions, using their own bodies as reference. More metaphors than literal likenesses, the images should encourage a wide variety of styles as students explore their own histories and identities. This course will last between ten and twelve weeks, depending upon the number of hours per class (ideally, six), and number of classes offered per week. I would like eight to ten volunteers to participate in the study; however, enrollment in the course would not be limited to those few. A maximum of fifteen students in a class would work best, I feel, but more than one class may be offered concurrently. My schedule is quite flexible; I am available weekends and Tuesday, Thursday and Friday evenings. As this proposal benefits me as much as inmate students (and possibly staff), I am offering this service free. I may submit a request to cover supplies, depending upon what materials are available on site, and what funds I can pry out of my department. As we will emphasize working with what is at hand, and active recycling, any amount suggested should be modest. If you wish to discuss this proposal with me further, you can reach me at: [*=*******]. You may also contact my Faculty Advisor, Rita Irwin, at [****•***]. Thank you for your co-operation. Sincerely, Graeme Knight. 156 Appendix II Questionnaire A (beginning of the course) 1. When was the last time you made a drawing, painting or other item of visual interest (anything, including 'useful' articles like tooled leather or tattoos, that is pleasing to the eye)? a week ago or less more than a week ago but within the past month between one and twelve months ago one to three years ago more than three years ago can't remember 2. What was it? 3. Overall, were you: A) really pleased; B) satisfied; C) disappointed but felt you learned something; or D) totally discouraged with the result of your effort? 4. (answer if you checked B,C, or D for #3.) What could or would you have done to improve the result of your art project? 5. Do you like to draw? a lot sometimes ; only when I'm really bored not at all. 6. What things do you like to draw? 7. What materials, or mediums, (e.g. pencil, charcoal, ink, etc.) do you like to use? 8. Have you ever made an art piece in three dimensions (e.g. soapstone or wood carving, clay modelling, cardboard construction)? yes no 9. If yes, what was it? 10. Circle the following museums or events you ever attended: animal show, such as the Royal Winter Fair, or a dog show antique show aquarium art gallery (commercial) art gallery (public, like the Art Gallery of Ontario) automobile or boat show botanical house or garden 157 craft museum fashion show home show Museum of Civilization, Ottawa Maritime museum military or airforce base "open house" military museum museum of natural history (dinosaurs, etc.) Native American Powow pioneer village, fort or other historical reconstruction planetarium provincial or national parks Science Centre zoo other (please specify) . 11. What do you like to do in your spare time? (please underline) play sports (which ones?) : work out with weights read watch TV listen to music listen to the radio play music (your own instrument: ) write (circle any): letters, poetry, short stories, in a journal play cards talk play board games work on crossword or other puzzles work on school assignments other (please specify) 12. How many hours a week would you say you watch TV? 13. Which programs do you watch most often? 14. What do you hope to do when you are released? Thank you for your cooperation! 158 Appendix III Interview Questions - [********] Inmate Art Attitudes and Histories Interviewer: Graeme Knight Interviewee: Place: [*******^  Room: Date: 1. How many hours per week would you say you spend on your hobby? This includes all the time preparing, ordering materials, reading and other research you do on your project. 2. Describe the procedure for obtaining materials for your art or craft. 3. What materials are restricted? 4. Are there any skills you have acquired in prison that you will use for leisure time, when you are released? 5. Tell me about some of the things in art or crafts that you did before you were incarcerated. 6. What other pastimes did you enjoy before your prison sentence, that is, on the 'outside'? 7. What sorts of images do you like to make (draw, sculpt, paint, etc.)? 8. Where do you get your ideas, or images from, to do your hobby? 9. Have you noticed any positive, beneficial effects from doing hobbycrafts or art? If so, what are they? 10. Have you noticed any harmful or negative effects from doing hobbycrafts or art? What are they? 12. What would you say is your best, or favorite, hobby? 13. How did you learn it? 14. In general, what would you say is more important, mastering a skill or technique, or expressing yourself? 15. How does the time you spend in hobby activities compare with other time, such as a) other free time activities (please specify); b) regular daytime program activity; c) visiting time; and d) other time? 16. What are some words or expressions you would use to describe time? 17. In general, how quickly does time pass for you, in here? 18. Are there times, for example, times of day, seasons, during certain activities, when time seems to pass more slowly? More quickly? 19. Please describe a typical week at Matsqui: the structure, periods of school, work, meals, visiting hours, "free time", weekends, and so on. 20. In general, how does the time you spend in prison compare with time on the outside? 21. What changes have you noticed in yourself during your time spent in prison? 22. Has working on a hobby or an art activity had any impact on this (these) change(s)? 23. Do you have any other thoughts or insights about time you would like to share? 24. Where are you at in your sentence (near the beginning, somewhere in the middle, or close to the end)? 25. What advice can you give me, or any art teacher who wants to set up a course in prison? 26.1s there any thing else you would like to say? 159 T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F B R I T I S H C O L U M B I A A p p e n d i x IV Faculty of Education Department of Curriculum Studies 2125 Main Mall Vancouver, B.C. Canada V6T 1Z4 Tel: (604) 822-5422 Fax:(604) 822-4714 May 28, 1996. . Dear Volunteer: I am a student at the University of British Columbia, specializing in art education. I would like to conduct some interviews and observations with you as part of my research which I will use toward a thesis for my M . A . degree. The purpose of this study is to discover how inmates in a long-term correctional facility understand and experience time, and how art activity impacts on their experience of time and their identities of themselves. To find this out, I would like to interview you, and observe your conduct in class, throughout the course of instruction. I will need two interviews: at the beginning of the course and at the end. Each time I will ask you questions regarding what you think about time in general: how you experience it and the way(s) you define it; and other questions to do with how art activity impacts on your sense of time, and on yourself in general. The second interview will also concern specific artistic problems that you will be involved with at the time. Each interview should take no more than twenty minutes (Total time: one hour maximum). I will use audio tape only. It is important that I record your own words verbatim. Your answers, and any observations I make, will be treated with total confidentiality. Nobody other than yourself, me, and my advisor, Dr. Rita Irwin, will see or read the information I collect. A l l names will be changed in any written descriptions. After I have summarized my findings, all data will be destroyed. If you have any questions or concerns about the procedure at any time, either during or after the session, please let me know. You may refuse to participate, or, if you wish to drop out of this study at any time you may do so and remain in the art course. Of course, I can offer you no cash payment or gift of any sort, only gratitude. Your cooperation is extremely valuable to me. Thank you for your consent and assistance. Sincerely, Graeme Knight. I, understand the purpose of this study and freely volunteer my permission to Graeme Knight to interview me and observe my conduct in art class. I have received a copy of this consent form for my records, page 1 of 1 Signed: Date: ; page 1 of 1 160 Appendix V E X P L O R A T I O N S T H R O U G H A R T COURSE CALENDAR - Summer 1996 - [**************], B.C. Week 1: Explorations Through Art: introduction/drawing Tuesday, May 21 no class Thursday, May 23 introduction to drawing: a): gesture, colored chalk pastel. NOTES: outline of course, request for research participant volunteers Week 2: Drawing II Tuesday, May 28 drawing b): contour, value, texture, lines' expressive meanings. Thursday, May 30 drawing c): inverted shapes, .positive and negative space exercises. Visuals: slides of drawings from European and Asian artists; 10th century to present. Week 3: Painting Tuesday, June 4 Introduction to color: emotional & physical properties; color wheels Thursday, June 6 Painting with tempera: Imaginary landscapes, copying modern masters and/or still lives Visuals: Slides of Impressionist & modern work, real objects, color images from books Week 4:Political and Issue Art: "pushing buttons." Tuesday, June 11 Collage and Montage: Making use of everyday materials. Thursday, June 13 images - magazine photos, to create personal statements Visuals: Pop. conceptual, and Native artists. Week 5 (?): Papermaking with Wendy Stephenson Tuesday, June 18 Ms. Stephenson will lead class in their own creation of paper Thursday, June 20 Continuation of papermaking. To Be Announced. Week 6: Printmaking Tuesday, June 25 Brief review of relief printmaking (new to some): linocutting Thursday, June 27 Linocutting continued. Advanced students are encouraged to experiment with own paper & multicolors. Visuals: Prtints from Japanese woodblocks, Munch, Picasso, Rauschenburg Warhol, Sawai, etc. Note:Personal meaning will be emphasized.. Week 7: Sculpture I: clay modelling/casting. Tuesday, July 2 Design and execute a relief sculpture Thursday, July 4 Casting of relief sculpture in plaster of Paris. Body parts may be cast as well, at discretion of teacher. Visuals: Renaissance (15th & 16th centuries) doorways and freestanding statues, to George Segal, prisoner-artists. Week 8: Sculpture II: construction/assemblage Tuesday, July 9 Students may continue themes developed with collage unit; combination of... Thursday, July 11 ...found materials and objects with casting and/or plaster. Visuals: Marisol. Nevelson, Picasso, Native and African sculpture. Week 9: Preparation for Animat ion : Comic book Tuesday, July 16 Students will write and illustrate an autobiographical comic book.. . . Thursday, July 18 which may be later developed into a three-minute animation sequence. Visuals: Adult themed comics (NOT porn!) from various comic artists (Robert Crumb, Japanese styles, etc.) Week 10 (?) Animation with guest artist Michelle Willmott Tuesday, July 23 A four-week unit in animated film for those, interested.... Thursday, July 25 ...Students may also work in their own chosen medium over the next four weeks. Visuals: T .B .A. A diverse show of animated film styles, featuring some real classics. Week 11: Animation unit or one's Tuesday, July 30 ...own medium continues Thursday, August 1 ..until the end of classes! Week 12: Tuesday, August 6 Thursday, August 8 Week 13: Tuesday, August 13 Thursday, August 15 Instructor: Graeme Knight 161 A p p e n d i x VI Correctional Service Canada Service correctionne! Canada Number — Numero: Date 1 9 9 2 - 0 3 -11 Resp. Center 1 2 Code Centre de resp. Page: of/de LIST OF APPROVED CELL HOBBIES AND RELATED TOOLS AND MATERIALS Hobby Toola Mater Artwork: Painting, Drawing C a l l i g r a p h y , C r e a t i v e Writing Copper Tooling Drafting Fly Tying jewellery Craft, S i l v e r Craft Knitting I Crocheting Leather-craft Model Building Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, Scissors , Pencils, Brushes, Palettes, 3 oz. Thinner, Palette Knife, Stretch F raaie a , D r a f t i n g Set, Scissors Needles, Beading, Looms, Scissors, Exacto Knife, Knife Blades Pens & nibs Pens & nibs Moulding to o l s , Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, Scissors Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, 2' T-Square, L-Square, Scissors Small Needle Nose, P l i e r s , Scissors, Budding needles, Fly-Tying Vise Needlenose P l i e r s , Engraver, Needles, Small Snips, Tool Sharpener, Engraving Tools, Jewell ers Block, *o_r_-iCharponocv K n i t t i n g needles, Scissors, Needles, Crochet Hooks, Tape Measure, S t i t c h Holders, Cauges, Yarn Holder Scissors, Needles, Swivel Knife, 8"L.Wooden Mallet, Stamping Tools, Leather Punch, Brushes, Cauges Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, Tweezers, Vise, Hand D r i l l Paints, Charts, Masking Tape, Paper, Charcoal, fli«wng i Pay a* t Canvas, Drawing Pens, Inks, Water Paints, L e t t r a Set, Matting Board, O i l Paints. Beads, thread, wax, Scrap leather, p e n c i l s , Pencil crayons, fasteners, Masking Tape, Patterns Ink, Paper, Books Paper, Ink Copper Pins t Paints, 4 sq.f t. Copper sheeting, Spackle, Patterns & Mould, Steelwool, Tracing Film Pens, Pencils, S t e n c i l s , Masking Tape, Paper Hooks, Feathers, Thread, Wool, White glue. Fur, S i l k , Masking tape, Fishing Line Wire, Stones, Metal, Emery Paper, Pencils, Paper, Wax, Feathers, Beads, Shells, Emery Cloth, Leather, Ivory and/or Tangua Nuts, Findings Wool, Books, Charts, Pins, Zippers, Buttons, Masking Tape Leather, Lacing, Patterns, 4 oz. Contact Cement or White G lue, Dyes,~ Waxes, Studs t Findings, Leather Weld Model K i t s , Brushes, Paints, B-uohcc, Pens, Non-Toxic Clue, Wire, Wood Pieces, F i t t i n g s Petit Point, Needle Point Scissors, Needles, Exacto Knife, Wooden Frames, Knife Blades, Magnifying Device Wool, Beads, Ring3, Hangers, Books, Threads, Cotton Wool, Patterns, Masking Tape, Paper, Screen, Mat Board LIST Or APPROVED CELL HOBBIES AND RELATED TOOLS AND MATERIALS Hobby Rug Hooking Soap Stone 4 A r g a l l t e Carving Tools Rug Hook, Stapler, Wood Frame, Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, Sc i s s o r s Exacto Knife, Knife Blades Materials Wool, Canvas, Charts, Staples, Needles Pens, Pencil Crayons, Soap Stone, A r g a l i t e CSC-3CC 1-15 (R-fl7-l0) 7 " o - 2 - . - 9 0 3 - i 5 6 9 DIRECTIVE "Introduction'' 162 £1*1 Correctional Service Canada Service correctionnel Canada Number — Numero: Date 10.09-03-11 P a g e : : o f / d e . R e s p . Center C o d e i Centre de resp. String Art Hood Carving/Woodwork Exacto Knife, Wooden Mallet, Knife Blades Set of 6 Carving Knives, or Gouge Set, Brushes t Compass Set, Sharpening Stone, Exacto Knife, Knife Blades 3/4" F i n i s h i n g H a i l s , Plywood (12" X 12"), Thread, White Clue, Water base Faints Wood (max. 2 s q . f t . ) . Sandpaper,. Faint, White glue, Beeswax, Screws, Fi t t i n g s , Pens, Pencils, Steelwool, Material/Cloth, Polish NOTE: A l l scissors must be Blunt-end and 4 inches or l e s s . Carving Tool blades must not exceed I 1-1/2 inches. Materials include applicable books & patterns f o r hobby. Pelican 100 Series Ink j^—noj^jillowed. THE FOLLOW I KG ARE NOT ALLOWED TN THE LIVING UNITS Class, Carving Tools with a blade that exceeds 1-1/2 inches, Toxic Clue, Lacquer/varnish, screwdrivers. F i l e s or Saws. J a - i n T - f l - f i a t i thinners must Solvent Base Paints, pprovejl. auth,ojrized .3_p_z. cojv^a^gejrs^ A l l Shop Hobby a c t i v i t i e s must be done i n the Hobby Shop and not taken into the C e l l s . " A l l carving knives and engraving tools must be kept i n a locked container when not i n use. Engraving tools for s i l v e r a c t i v i t i e s are not subject to the 1-1/2 inch l i m i t a t i o n , but must be personally inspected and approved by the Arts & Crafts O f f i c e r before being allowed i n the Living Unit. APPROVED SHOP ACTIVITIES Ceramics/Pottery Exacto Knife, 4 Knife Blades, Shaping Tools, Shaping Needles, Clay S l i c e r , .Brushes Ceramic C l u e , C l a y , Creenware, Glazes , Paints, Sponges, Plaster of Paris, Glass &. Hirror Etching Exacto Knife, Class Cutter, Knife Blades, Brushes Mirror, Class, Masking Tape, Pens, Pencils, Paper, Paint Stained Class Class Cutters, P l i e r s , Mallets, Class Grinders, Soldering Iron, Exacto Knife, Knife Blades, Lead Knives, Side C u t t e r s , Brushes, Mallets Class, Solder, Flux, Moulds, Patterns, Forms, Glue, Patina, Lamp Parts, Nails, Wax, Masking Tape, Pens, Pencils, Paints, Grinding Stones, Copper F o i l , Class Polish Hand Tools, Small Power Tools, Router B i t s Wood, screws, n a i l s . Wood f i l l e r , varnish, paints NOTE: A l l Shop Tools must remain i n the Hobby Shop and s h a l l not be taken to the c e l l s . A l l Shop Hobby shall be done i n the shop only and riot taken to the c e l l s . Inmates are not allowed to own Hacksaws or Grinders. CSC/SCC 1-15 (R-87-10) 7530-21-903-1569 163 DIRECTIVE "Wrcc-.j.iGn" 


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