Liza Jessie Peterson - All Day: A Year of Love and Survival Teaching Incarcerated Kids at Rikers Island
Peterson stumbled into teaching as a way to support her acting and writing. Her job was at Island Academy, the high school for young inmates at Rikers Island, and it became as much a calling as art. After eighteen years of working with juvenile prisoners, Peterson, a program counselor with the New York City Department of Corrections, looks back over the students she’s known, focusing in detail on her first year at Island. As she documents the daily realities of mass incarceration, Peterson takes us into the minds and hearts of vulnerable, alienated, and talented individuals, showing what can be accomplished if we give them respect rather than punishment. Look for the forthcoming film by Selma director, Ava DuVernay, which will feature Peterson’s art and activism.
Peterson will be in conversation with D. Watkins, Salon columnist and author of The Cook Up.