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FRIHUMSAM-Fri prosj.st. hum og sam

Prisons of Note: Mapping music and nuances in penal exceptionalism from the periphery

Alternative title: "Prisons of Note": Kartlegging av musikk og nyanser i straffeeksepsjonalisme fra periferien

Awarded: NOK 8.0 mill.

Project Number:

315759

Application Type:

Project Period:

2021 - 2024

Location:

Music is an integral and vital part of human life in times of joy and triumph, as well as in times of crisis and isolation. The PRISONS OF NOTE project investigates the experiences of, circumstances surrounding, and approaches to music and imprisonment in the lives of people in custody, prison staff, and stakeholders. It examines the relationship between prison music (including music education, music therapy, music-making and listening initiatives) and the sociocultural, political, ethical and aesthetic implications of this creative practice from multiple perspectives. The project uses an international, comparative approach grounded in empirical research to map the nuances and asymmetries in penal exceptionalism from smaller, peripheral jurisdictions within the global West, to untangle the ways music is used – and is useful – in prison. PRISONS OF NOTE builds on recent musicology and comparative penology research, drawing from models of prison ethnography, sociology and ethnomusicology, led by a musicologist PI and a diverse research team of criminologists & sociologists. The project compares prison music experiences in smaller jurisdictions of penal exceptionalism – places that have been largely overlooked in comparative criminological and musicological discourse in favour of an Anglo-American bias. As we tackle rising incarceration rates around the world, this project collects qualitative data from case studies in Norway, Iceland and the Republic of Ireland in order to contribute innovative, interdisciplinary knowledge on how music is used in prisons from a peripheral perspective. Thus PRISONS OF NOTE will change how we study music and imprisonment, from isolated, single-nation case studies to connected, transcultural experiences that transcend national borders, that gives voice to experiences of penal exceptionalism and prisons of note.

Music is an integral and vital part of human life in times of joy and triumph, as well as in times of crisis and isolation. PRISONS OF NOTE will investigate the experiences of, circumstances surrounding, and approaches to music and imprisonment in the lives of prisoners, staff, and stakeholders. It will examine the relationship between prison music – including music education, music therapy, music-making and listening initiatives – and the sociocultural, political, ethical and aesthetic implications of this creative practice from multiple perspectives. Using an international, comparative approach grounded in empirical research, the project maps the nuances and asymmetries in penal exceptionalism from smaller, peripheral jurisdictions within the global West, to untangle the ways music is used –and is useful– in prison. PRISONS OF NOTE builds on recent scholarship from musicology and comparative penology, drawing from models of prison ethnography, sociology and ethnomusicology, led by a musicologist PI and a diverse research team of criminologists & sociologists (postdoc, master students, film scholar & scientific advisory board). This significant, ambitious project compares prison music experiences in smaller jurisdictions of penal exceptionalism – places that have been largely overlooked in comparative criminological and musicological discourse in favour of an Anglo-American bias. As we tackle rising incarceration rates around the world, this project is unique in that it collects qualitative data from prison case studies in Norway, Iceland and the Republic of Ireland in order to contribute new, interdisciplinary knowledge on how music is used and is useful in prisons from a peripheral perspective. Thus PRISONS OF NOTE will change how we study music and imprisonment, from isolated, single-nation case studies to connected, transcultural experiences that transcend national borders, that gives a special voice to experiences of penal exceptionalism and prisons of note.

Activity:

FRIHUMSAM-Fri prosj.st. hum og sam