Prison on screen in Italy: from “shame therapy” propaganda to citizenship programmes

Policek, Nicoletta ORCID logo ORCID: (2020) Prison on screen in Italy: from “shame therapy” propaganda to citizenship programmes. In: Harmes, Marcus, Harmes, Meredith and Harmes, Barbara, (eds.) The Palgrave handbook of incarceration in popular culture. Palgrave Macmillan, Cham, Switzerland, pp. 731-743. Full text not available from this repository.

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Italian cinema provides a nuanced view of prison, from short movies produced by the Istituto Luce, during the period 1928–1932, when the Fascist regime’s narratives dominated the Italian cinema screens and prison appeared as a fundamental tool of propaganda, through the post-World War II Neorealist stories set amongst the poor and the working class. Now there is the more contemporary “usage” of prison movies. The chapter considers the link between cinema and prison through penological theories and praxis that mirrors societal changes when it comes to defining the meanings and purposes of incarceration. Adopting a broad semiotic approach, the chapter presents an analysis of the content and ideologies behind the representation of prison on screen through the duality between the “shame therapy” propaganda and the making of movies as art therapy in prison projects. The construction of a genealogy of prison-set motion pictures is more than simply providing an overview of the representations and usages of the prison space. By exploring prison and prisoners’ place in society, we address much more complex issues relating to citizenship and belonging.

Item Type: Book Section
Publisher: Palgrave Macmillan
ISBN: 9783030360580
Departments: Institute of Business, Industry and Leadership > Policing and Criminology
Depositing User: Christian Stretton
Date Deposited: 13 Feb 2020 13:03
Last Modified: 13 Jan 2024 10:33
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