By Natalie Smith and Bruce Western 


This documentary film project is produced as part of the Justice and Poverty Project at Harvard University.  Through collaborative filmmaking, the project aims to engage and elevate the voices of individuals and families who have experienced incarceration.

To understand incarceration, we believe it is important to first ask those with direct experience what it has meant for them. Listening to people who have been to prison expands the conversation about justice and includes voices that have too often been silenced, excluded, or ignored.

The stories in this project are told by men and women – fathers, sisters, neighbors, and friends – who are living in a time when incarceration rates are historically high.  While the videos focus on narratives of imprisonment, the experiences of each storyteller extend beyond their interactions with the criminal justice system.  When you watch these videos, please remember that each segment has been cut and edited from a much longer interview, and that each interview is just a short excerpt about a much broader life.  

We would like to extend a special thank you to the Fortune Society for connecting us with some of the individuals featured in this project and for providing a space to film interviews.  To learn more about the work of the Fortune Society, visit their website: http://fortunesociety.org/