The University of Arizona Poetry Center’s Art for Justice grant funds a three-year project that will commission new work from leading writers in conversation with the crisis of mass incarceration in the United States, with the goal of creating new awareness and empathy through presentation and publication. In particular, through the work of leading poets, the project will seek to confront racial inequities within the criminal justice system to promote social justice and change.
Over the three years of funding, the project will:
commission and present new work from poet ambassadors in the Reading & Lecture series at the University of Arizona, in conversation will local organizations working for change in the criminal justice system, in three cohorts;
commission found-text poems and responses created from the language of representative federal and state legislation that has disproportionately affected people of color;
seek to publish works created through the above commissions in leading publication venues through publishing partnerships;
create a single-source archive for all new works on the Poetry Center’s website, including interactive platforms to encourage public participation in the found-text project.