What is Higher Education in Prison? Introduction to Radical Departures: Ruminations on the Purposes of Higher Education in Prison

Erin L. Castro, Mary Rachel Gould


For far too long, “correctional education” has served as an umbrella framework for all educational opportunities offered inside prisons and jails throughout the United States. In community with students, scholars, and practitioners, we wish to engage and highlight scholarship on higher education in prison in much the same way we theorize higher education in society more broadly, by focusing on the purposes for why we should engage this work. The authors in this volume pose a direct challenge to the notion that higher education on non-carceral campuses and higher education in prisons should be guided by significantly different philosophies of higher education and in this Introduction, we outline the philosophies of education that should guide higher education in prison.


Higher Education in Prison; Prisons; Higher Education; Correctional Education; Prison Education

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ISSN 1920-4175 Critical Education