Redemption Songs: A Year in the Life of a Community Prison Choir

9:15 am and 11 am

Celebrant, Heidi Levine

Iowa City-based writer Andy Douglas will speak about and read from his new book, “Redemption Songs: A Year in the Life of a Community Prison Choir.” For six years, he volunteered with the Oakdale Community Choir, a performing chorale composed of both volunteers and inmates, in a correctional facility in Coralville. The United States incarcerates more prisoners per capita than any other country, with more than two million people in U.S. jails and prisons. In addition to exploring the role of singing as a rehabilitative tool, the book examines some of the pressing issues facing the criminal justice system. In doing so, it reflects on several questions – how can music and the arts inspire prisoners to change? Should the underlying philosophy of our penal system be one of retribution or restoration? What can restorative justice offer to all those touched by crime and the criminal justice system?

Music by the Bell Ave. Ringers.