Accepted Paper:

Take me to a place outside: a study into the bodily and imaginative aspects of imprisonment  
Martha-Cecilia Dietrich (University of Amsterdam)

Paper short abstract:

This paper discusses the outcomes of a collaborative media project in a UK Prison. 8 women represent their imagined outside through audio-visal means and help us in exploring the "unreal" as a contribution towards an Anthropology of Imagination.

Paper long abstract:

This paper discusses the outcomes of a collaborative media project conducted in 2009 among eight female offenders in a UK Prison.

Prisons are specific types of habitual environments where people's perceptual horizons, embodied sensorial experiences and social relations undergo radical transformations. These circumstances, as I argue, find their fundamental expression through an expansion of the imaginary. Based on methods of Applied Theatre and the collaborative use of media, this project aimed to explore the very complex relationship between the physical and the imagined.

The presentation will start with the 6-minute film "Take Me To A Place Outside", which brings together the inmate's creative work and the examination of the imaginary. Relating the outcomes to broader methodological questions, I will address the challenges of studying and representing imagination through the collaborative use of audio-visual media, the different possibilities and limitations inherent to them and its wider significance for an Anthropology of Imagination.

Panel W088
The imagination in times and spaces of crisis: day and night dreaming as forms of creative invention