Research and Evaluation

Please visit the Prison Arts Resource Project for a comprehensive collection of scholarly research on arts in the U.S. prison system. If you would like an article added to our listing, please email us at

Love, J. (2020) System Failure: A Critique of the Judicial System of the United States 

Briggs, H. (2018) Creativity for Change: An Examination of Creative Arts-Based Methods for Healing and Justice in the United States Department of Criminology,
University of Leicester

Brewster, L. (1983) An Evaluation of the Arts-in-Corrections Program of the California Department of Corrections William James Association Prison Arts Program

Brewster, L. (2012) Paths of Discovery: Art Practice and Its Impact on California Prisons San Quentin Prison Arts Project

Brewster, L. (2014) California Prison Arts: A Quantitative Evaluation University of San Francisco

California Lawyers for the Arts (2017) Arts in Corrections: County Jails Project

California Lawyers for the Arts (2019) Arts in Corrections: County Jails Project

California Lawyers for the Arts (2016) National Arts-in-Corrections Organization Feasibility Research Summary of Responses to Initial Survey of the Field by the National Steering Committee

California Lawyers for the Arts (2016) Justice Arts: Making the arts accessible to people in the juvenile and adult criminal justice system

Campbell, N. (2018) On the Inside: Evaluating Arts Education Programs in Prisons        M.P.A Thesis, The University of Alabama at Birmingham

Caulfield, L., Wilkinson, D. J., Wilson, D. (2016) Exploring alternative terrain in the rehabilitation and treatment of offenders: Findings from a prison-based music project Journal of Offender Rehabilitation Volume 55, Issue 6

Cohen, M. (2008) Meanings and practices of select U.S. male prison choirs Community Music Activity

Cohen, M. L. (2009) Choral singing and prison inmates: Influences of singing in a prison choir Journal of Correctional Education, 60, 1, 52-65

Cohen, M. L. (2008) Conductors’ Perceptions of Kansas Prison Choirs International Journal of Community Music, 1, 3, 319-333

Cohen, M. L. (2007) Explorations of inmate and volunteer choral experiences in a prison-based choir Australian Journal of Music Education, 1, 61-72

Duwe, G. (2018) The Importance of the Company You Keep: The Effectiveness of Social Support Interventions for Prisoners

Elsila, M. (1996) Music Behind Bars: Liberatory musicology in two Michigan prisons University of Michigan (Dissertation)

Gardner, A. et al (2014) Prison Arts Resource Project

Garner, B. (ed.) (2005) Focus on Basics: Connecting Research and Practice – Special Issue on Corrections Education.

Hamer, K. and Cedric Martin (2020) What happens when I look at you: the intimate space of prison theater Urdimento

Harbert, B. (2004-Present) Louisiana and California: Music in State Prisons

The Institute for Research on Women (2015) Marking Time: Prison Arts and Activism Resource Guide

Jacobi, T. (2003) Contraband Literacies: Incarcerated Women and Writing-as-Activism Dissertation, Syracuse University

Jason, W. (2009) As long as it comes from the heart: Imagining Coexistence and Nonviolence in a County Jail and Beyond M.A. Final Paper, Brandeis University

John Jay College of Criminal Justice (2003) Research Study on Rehabilitation Through the Arts (RTA)

Kessler, S. et. al (2010) Research Study on Rehabilitation Through the Arts (RTA) Purchase College, SUNY and New York State Department of Correctional Service

Mangaoang, Á. (2019) Dangerous Mediations: Pop Music in a Philippine Prison Video Bloomsbury Academic

Mer, B. (2011) Arts in Prison: Lessons from the United Kingdom

Moller, L. (2004) Prison Within a Prison: A Burkean Analysis of the Sing Sing Stage Production of ‘Slam’ Journal of Criminal Justice and Popular Culture 10 (3) 181-198

Northeastern University Archives. Elma Lewis School of Fine Arts records, 1954-1992. 

Schrift, M. (2006) Angola Prison Art: Captivity, Creativity, and Consumerism Journal of American Folklore 119 (473)

Silber, L. (2005) Bars behind bars: the impact of a women’s prison choir on social harmony Music Education Research Volume 7, Issue 2

Schippers, H., Bartleet, B.-L., Balfour, M., & Rynne, J. (2011). Captive audiences: The impact of performing arts programs in Australian prisons.

Stanford, A.F. (2005) Where love flies free: women, home, and writing in Cook County Jail Journal of Prevention & Intervention in the Community Volume 30, Issue 1-2

Tannenbaum, J (2016) Arts, Prisons, & Rehabilitation Excerpted from Arts & America: Arts, Culture, and the Future of America’s Communities by Americans for the Arts

Thorn, L (2012) Naked state: creativity and the empowerment of incarcerated women and girls

WolfBrown (2012-2017) Research papers around the potential impacts of arts-based programming in justice settings, commissioned by Carnegie Hall’s Weil Music Institute