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Dancing to the Concertina's Tune: A Prison Teacher's Memoir Paperback – May 5, 2004

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Northeastern (May 5, 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1555536018
  • ISBN-13: 978-1555536015
  • Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 6 x 0.7 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #4,052,873 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"While she is informing her readers of what it is like to teach violent felons in deep-security prisons, she is also informing them of what life is like for those prisoners. Her book is honest and free of any sort of sentimentality. She wants us to see the humanity of the prisoners, but she does not want us to forget why they are behind bars. Her language is open and accessible." --Statesman Journal

"At bottom, the book is about how education can be used as a means toward transformation, and, perhaps, redemption. Walker is steadfast in her argument for education the imprisoned in parenting and family skills."--Washington State Magazine

About the Author

Jan Walker, a former community college teacher trained in child and family studies, is the author of Parenting from a Distance: Your Rights and Responsibilities, training manuals for corrections educators, and works of fiction. She lives in Gig Harbor, Washington.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Sylvia Peterson on July 12, 2004
Format: Hardcover
Jan Walker expertly articulates her experiences providing vital education in two of Washington State's prisons, but the worth of her writing goes much deeper. She is a candid guide through the current cultural minefield of crime and corrections. Our society is vocally tough on crime, locking up more people for longer sentences than ever. But without an opportunity for education, character development, spiritual maturing, employable skills and family healing, prisons are underfunded warehouses reinforcing the very values nobody wants released to their neighborhoods. Walker's work at McNeil Island Correctional Center left footprints on men's hearts and their children's lives. My husband and I know this, although we have never met her and were unfamiliar with the entire scope of her work until reading this book. Nonetheless we currently strive to continue what she started at McNeil. Are we, and Walker, "soft on crime and criminals'? No. Like her, and countless dedicated educators across the nation, we believe that families, and especially children, do time with each convicted felon. Anything we can do to ignite understanding, change destructive family patterns and promote generational healing is of benefit to our society as a whole. Jan Walker's memoir is authentic and insightful. I wish every legislator in our country was required to read it... and take a test.
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