Theatre as a Way of Inclusion - What effects can theatre have on matters of rehabilitation with (youth) offenders in prison?
Zirwes, Caroline Franziska
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Zirwes, C. (2016) Theatre as a Way of Inclusion - What effects can theatre have on matters of rehabilitation with (youth) offenders in prison?, no. 54.
The following research project examines what effects participation in a theatre project can have on youth offenders in prison. As an example the WERFT project at the Justizvollzugsanstalt (JVA) Wiesbaden was chosen and some of the participants were questioned through a questionnaire developed by the researcher. The questionnaire included questions on their personal expectations and experiences regarding the project to gain insight into impacts and effects which the project might have on issues regarding re-integration into society. Additionally, a diverse mixture of prison staff has been interviewed; during the interviews, there was a particular focus on matters in regards to identifiable and measurable changes in participants' behaviours as well as personal perceptions of these changes. The findings are discussed in relation to existing literature on the topic. Overall, it can be assumed that participation in theatre projects not only serves an educational purpose, but also offers a chance to change the inmates' behaviour: higher self-confidence, increased communication and better conflict management skills can be observed amongst other positive effects.