Continued Collaborations, New Directions: Welcome Back to Another Year of Community Organizing with HBB!


Dear Humanities Behind Bars members and supporters,

Welcome back to another season of study and struggle! We hope you all had a great summer and feel well-rested and ready to continue our ongoing efforts to cultivate networks of care and solidarity. We are pleased to announce that HBB has a number of events and opportunities for engagement coming up!

A huge shout-out to Casey and Elle, members of the Fundraising Committee, for getting Humanities Behind Bars officially registered as a nonprofit! Y'all are absolutely amazing! As a nonprofit, one of our main areas of focus will be on strengthening our community-based networks of care and mutual aid.

We are continuing our solidarity letter-writing hours (more info below) as well as our education program at Norfolk City Jail. If you're interested in teaching classes or tutoring this fall, please email Meghan to get the process started at:

Humanities Behind Bars will be participating in the Norfolk Zine Fest happening next Saturday, September 14th at Fawn Street Artist's Studio (2501 Fawn St, Norfolk, VA 23504) from 1-6pm. Stop on by our half-table to purchase Contraband Love, the fantastic zine we have been hard at work on this past year. We will also be selling HBB swag in the form of t-shirts and stickers. Remember, all of the proceeds we make go back into the organization 1) for basic maintenance costs of our programs (e.g. stamps for letters, books for students, etc.) and 2) to directly support our currently and formerly incarcerated comrades! #solidaritynotcharity

Teaching & Advocacy Team Meeting

Our next Teaching & Advocacy Team meeting is coming up - don't miss it!

Are you interested in getting more involved with HBB? We hope so! One of the topics we will discuss at this upcoming meeting is the reconvening of our existing committees (Fundraising, Public Relations, Critical Conversations, and 'Reentry' Network Development) as well as starting a Teacher/Tutor Working Group. Please join the conversation on Thursday, September 12th at Cogan's Pizza North (4311 Colley Ave, Norfolk, VA 23508) from 7:30-9:30pm on the rooftop patio.

At the meeting, Student Justice Coordinator Danielle Goldstein will also introduce a direct action through the HBB Student Club at ODU, which recently formed a coalition with other folks on campus. The coalition is meant to address ways to cultivate an awareness of the overlapping injustices perpetuated by unethical food providers/distributors that negatively impact both university students as well as incarcerated populations across the United States. You can email her directly for more information at:

Additionally, we will be planning the Zine Release Party for Contraband Love in order to celebrate the culmination of many months of hard work and dedication by our Zine Team and, most importantly, the creative contributors that made this critical text possible! Contraband Love is an inside/outside collaboration featuring the art and writings of people impacted and outraged by incarceration in the United States.

Questions? Concerns? Ideas? If you have any agenda items you would like to discuss at the meeting, please let us know by the morning of September 12th. You can submit this information to Meghan at:

Abolition Write Now: Fall 2019 Solidarity Letter-Writing Sessions 

Last but not least, we’re excited to announce the schedule for our fall letter-writing hours! We will be meeting on the third-ish Thursday of every month in the auditorium at The Muse Writer's Center. Come on over and visit with us, write a letter to an incarcerated comrade, enjoy some light snacks and refreshments, and show your solidarity. We already have letters from folks on the inside looking for someone to write with! New volunteers are always welcome!

For an overview of the program, check out our collectively written guidelines.

If you have any questions about the pen-pal program, or are interested in corresponding with a pen-pal but are not able to make it to any of the sessions, or are out of state, please contact Danielle at:

Come dream and scheme a just world with us!

Toward abolition,

Alison Reed, Program Director & Co-Founder
Meghan Morris, Graduate Research Assistant
Danielle Goldstein, Student Justice Coordinator
Casey Guditus, HBB Treasurer & IWOC Liason
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