Media Law Prof Blog

Editor: Christine A. Corcos
Louisiana State Univ.

Monday, September 10, 2018

U.S. Prisons and Restriction of Freedom of Expression on Security Grounds @PENAmerican

From the Guardian: reporting on surveillance, investigation, and censorship of inmate participants and some others (not inmates) in PEN America's Prison Writing Program, based on security concerns.  The Guardian article begins:


Did or did not the prisoner turn into a bird and fly away? That’s what the officials want to know in Matthew Mendoza’s Freedom Feather, a short dialogue-driven work of magical realism. The play was originally censored by the Texas Department of Corrections for the use of the word escape. It’s hard to imagine a single word in a dramatic work constituting a safety risk – especially in a context so exaggeratedly fictional it becomes fantastical. But that was the only articulated official justification.


Here's a link to PEN America's press release on federal prison policy on the issue.

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