Prison is used world-wide as a form of punishment or detention for men, women and children, within a functioning criminal justice system, and its use can be traced back to the rise of the earliest forms of state or social organisation in which humans have lived. Prisons are variously known as jails, gaols, penitentiaries, detention centres, correctional centres, and remand centres. They can be used as a tool of political repression, or a means of detaining large groups of civilians during times of war.
Incarceration has a long history, and despite its core commonality, as an experience it has varied historically, and continues to vary, in different societies all over the world. Although imprisonment is most commonly in a building, often purpose-built, it has variously taken place on ships, in camps, on islands, and in castles, fortresses, penal colonies, quarries, sewers, cages and dungeons. Imprisonment has become the dominant form of punishment in most societies across the world, and may occur prior to trial or as a result of sentencing by a properly constituted court. Imprisonment without trial or due process occurs in various forms in most societies across the world, mostly sanctioned by the state itself, sometimes used as a political strategy by military, ideological, political or religious groups within a state, or by groups desirous of becoming a state.
The prison has become a formidable employer, sometimes the dominant employer in neighbourhoods or towns. Over time, it has also been the site of creativity: prison labour, prison art and prison literature (including poetry, drama and autobiography) have contributed hugely to our understanding both of the phenomenon of imprisonment and of the impact it has on lives. It can therefore be approached from a variety of experiential perspectives – that of prisoner, visitor, employee, volunteer, writer, artist, analyst or researcher.
The prison is a powerful metaphor as well, with the capacity to describe a challenging or difficult situation for an individual, a family or a community that seemingly presents no way out, and which presses down upon the human psyche in often unbearable ways. It has been an effective trope within literature, art, poetry and drama.
We welcome contributions about the prison from a wide range of perspectives, including legal, architectural, criminological, historical, geographical, fictional, psychotherapeutic, artistic, phenomenological, biographical and autobiographical points of view.
Contributions are particularly welcomed from former prisoners, detainees, incarcerated asylum seekers, former prisoners of war, political prisoners or those detained because of nationalist, religious or other convictions, those who have been to prison and have written about the experience; those who have fictionalised the prison experience in art and literature; those who have done paid or voluntary work in prison; and those who have researched the prison of the past and of the present. Additionally, we hope to hear from those involved with the architecture and design of prisons, those who are directly or indirectly involved with the delivery of incarceration,and those involved with any prisoners’ rights groups or with those who seek to ameliorate incarceration by providing therapeutic drama, literacy, education, counselling, religious support, death row support, and other services.
All genres and media will be considered, in order to examine the widest possible range of representations, past and contemporary, which inform us about the strange phenomenon of the prison with a view to forming a selective innovative interdisciplinary publication to engender further research and collaboration. We particularly welcome creative responses to the subject, such as poetry/prose, short film screenings/original drama, installations, and alternative presentation styles that engage the audience and foster debate.
Topics for discussion include, but are not restricted to:
Prisoners and the Prison Experience
Life After Prison
Prison As Institution
Prisons in Law and Policy
What To Send
The aim of this inclusive interdisciplinary conference and collaborative networking event is to bring people together and encourage creative conversations in the context of a variety of formats: papers, seminars, workshops, storytelling, performances, poster presentations, problem-solving sessions, case studies, panels, q&a’s, round-tables etc. Creative responses to the subject, such as poetry/prose, short film screenings/original drama, installations and alternative presentation styles that engage the audience and foster debate are particularly encouraged. Please feel free to put forward proposals that you think will get the message across, in whatever form.
At the end of the conference we will be exploring ways in which we can develop the discussions and dialogues in new and sustainable inclusive interdisciplinary directions, including research, workshops, publications, public interest days, associations, developing courses etc which will help us make sense of the topics discussed during the meeting. There is an intention, subject to the discussions which emerge during the course of the meeting, to form a selective innovative interdisciplinary publication to engender further research and collaboration.
300 word proposals, presentations, abstracts and other forms of contribution and participation should be submitted by Friday 26th November 2021. Other forms of participation should be discussed in advance with the Organising Chairs.
All submissions will be at least double reviewed, under anonymous (blind) conditions, by a global panel drawn from members of the Project Team, the Development Team and the Advisory Board. In practice our procedures usually entail that by the time a proposal is accepted, it will have been triple and quadruple reviewed.
You will be notified of the panel’s decision by Friday 10th December 2021.
If your submission is accepted for the conference, a full draft of your contribution should be submitted by Friday 8th April 2022.
Abstracts and proposals may be in Word, RTF or Notepad formats with the following information and in this order:
a) author(s), b) affiliation as you would like it to appear in the programme, c) email address, d) title of proposal, e) type of proposal e.g. paper presentation, workshop, panel, film, performance, etc, f) body of proposal, g) up to 10 keywords.
E-mails should be entitled: Experiencing Prison Submission
Details and Information
The Registration Fee is £285 and includes:
~ conference registration fee
~ online registration
~ online abstract and programme submissions
~ Book of Abstracts
~ Delegate Pack (online and physical)
~ Saturday coffee/tea on arrival
~ Saturday morning coffee and biscuits
~ Saturday lunch
~ Saturday afternoon tea and biscuits
~ Saturday evening wine and drinks reception
~ drinks in the conference room
~ Sunday morning coffee and biscuits
~ Sunday lunch
~ Sunday afternoon tea and biscuits
~ drinks in the conference room
~ participation in project output discussion session
~ discounted rates for any outputs emerging from the event
~ discounted rate for attendance at further Progressive Connexions activities and events
Calendar of time-lines and deadlines
Friday 26th November 2021
Friday 10th December 2021
Friday 21st January 2022
Booking Form Submissions
by Friday 4th February 2022
Circulation of Draft Programme
Monday 7th March 2022
Final date for payment
Friday 1st April April 2022
Circulation of Revised Programme
Full draft of presentation to be submitted
Monday 18th April 2022
Final programme to printing
The conference is being held at the Vienna House Andel's Prague
Stroupeznickeho 21. 15000 Prague
+420 296 882 302
We have reserved rooms for delegates at the conference hotel on favourable terms and conditions. On having a proposal accepted for presentation at the conference, and on the completion and submission of a booking form, a special booking form will be sent to you along with instructions on how to use it in order to access these terms.
Standard Room - Single Occupancy €90 per night including breakfast and all taxes
Standard Room - Double/Twin Person Occupancy €100 per night including breakfast and all taxes
Details will be sent to delegates on how to access these rates once receipt of the booking form has been confirmed.
Accommodation bookings are made directly with the hotel, not Progressive Connexions. All payments for accommodation are made directly to the hotel as well. A credit card will be required on booking.
You are free to find alternative accommodation. We are offering these arrangements as a convenience to folks who would like to be at the conference venue.
The conferences, meetings and events we organise are not single ‘one-off’ events. They are part of a continual stream of conversations, activities and projects which grow and evolve in different directions. At the conclusion of every meeting, the question needs to be considered: What happens next? After all, there is little personal, educational or professional benefit in gathering people together from around the world and sharing all sorts of fascinating conversations if nothing further is going to happen as a result!
The possible ranges of ‘outputs’ which can productively flow from our meetings is a dynamic response to the dialogues, issues and engagements that take place during the events themselves. And as our meetings are attended by folks who come from different backgrounds, contexts, professions and vocations, what people would like to see developed as a result of our time spent together will always be potentially diverse, fluid and appropriate to what took place.
One range of possible outputs involves publication as a way of continuing the work of a project. Where publishing is a possibility, it is directly referenced in the Call for Papers, Presentations and Participation. Other possible outputs may include, but are not limited to:
~ social media platforms such as Facebook pages and groups, blogs, wikis, Twitter, as vehicles for continuing dialogues, disseminating knowledge and information and bringing new people into the work of the project
~ reviews; reports; policy statements; position papers/statements; declarations of principles
~ proposals for meetings, workshops, courses, schools
~ collaboration gateways, platforms and media
~ personal and professional development opportunities: faculty development; mentoring programmes; cultural cruises; consultancies; summer schools; personal enrichment programmes
The range of outputs is dependent on how little or how much you would like to become involved. Don’t let the end of the meeting signal the end of your involvement with the project. Please get involved, bounce ideas around, think out loud – we’d love to hear about what you’d like to do and are always happy to talk about what is possible.
Participants must complete the online booking form by Friday 21st January 2022 at the latest.
After the deadline has expired, an invoice will be drawn up and sent to you; the invoice will contain all the necessary information for you to pay by bank transfer, cheque, Paypal or credit card.
The invoice must be settled by Monday 7th March 2022.
It is the responsibility of delegates to ensure that payment is made by this date. Failure to receive payment will result in your booking being cancelled.
There are a number of ways payment can be made.
Payment can be made by cheque, in GBP (£ sterling) only and must be drawn against a bank with headquarters in the United Kingdom. Cheques should be made payable to ‘Progressive Connexions’ and sent, with a copy of the booking form, to:
Dr Rob Fisher
149b Wroslyn Road
Oxfordshire. OX29 8HR
We regret we cannot and will not accept cheques made payable in currencies other than GBP Sterling.
Bank Transfer Payment may be made using bank transfer. There will be an option to pay in either GBP (£ Sterling) or Euro (€). Full details to enable a bank transfer are made available on your conference invoice. If paying by this method, you must agree to pay all charges at the sending and receiving banks.
You may request that an invoice be sent to you which you may forward to your institution. It is your responsibility to ensure that the invoice is paid before the payment deadline.
Your invoice will include a link to pay through a secure and encrypted online payment system. Please click the link to use this method.
Payment may also be made using credit card. We cannot accept American Express or Discovery as a form of payment.
Payment may also be made using Paypal. If paying by this method please send us the email account connected with your Paypal account and we will forward you a request for payment.
We strongly recommend that all delegates take out some form of travel or other insurance in relation to any and all travel arrangements or accommodation booked in regard to the conference. This should include cancellation insurance in the event of unforeseen or unexpected circumstances.
All fees are payable in advance. No delegate will be permitted entry to the conference if an invoice is still unpaid.
What’s so Special?
A fresh, friendly, dynamic format – at Progressive Connexions we are dedicated to breaking away from the stuffy, old-fashion conference formats, where endless presentations are read aloud off PowerPoints. We work to bring you an interactive format, where exchange of experience and information is alternated with captivating workshops, engaging debates and round tables, time set aside for getting to know each other and for discussing common future projects and initiatives, all in a warm, relaxed, egalitarian atmosphere.
A chance to network with international professionals – the beauty of our interdisciplinary events is that they bring together professionals from all over the world and from various fields of activity, all joined together by a shared passion. Not only will the exchange of experience, knowledge and stories be extremely valuable in itself, but we seek to create lasting, ever-growing communities around our projects, which will become a valuable resource for those belonging to them.
A chance to be part of constructing change – There is only one thing we love as much as promoting knowledge: promoting real, lasting social change by encouraging our participants to take collective action, under whichever form is most suited to their needs and expertise (policy proposals, measuring instruments, research projects, educational materials, etc.) We will support all such actions in the aftermath of the event as well, providing a platform for further discussions, advice from the experts on our Project Advisory Team and various other tools and intellectual resources, as needed.
An opportunity to discuss things that matter to you – Our events are not only about discussing how things work in the respective field, but also about how people work in that field – what are the struggles, problems and solutions professionals have found in their line of work, what are the areas where better communication among specialists is needed and how the interdisciplinary approach can help bridge those gaps and help provide answers to questions from specific areas of activity.
An unforgettable experience – When participating in a Progressive Connexions event, there is a good chance you will make some long-time friends. Our group sizes are intimate, our venues are comfortable and relaxing and our event locations are suited to the history and culture of the event.
Progressive Connexions believes it is a mark of personal courtesy and professional respect to your colleagues that all delegates should attend for the full duration of the meeting. If you are unable to make this commitment, please do not submit an abstract or proposal for presentation.
Please note: Progressive Connexions is a not-for-profit network and we are not in a position to be able to assist with conference travel or subsistence, nor can we offer discounts off published rates and fees.