Gilda L. Sheppard, PhD is a member of the faculty in sociology, cultural and media studies at The Evergreen State College Tacoma program. She is an award winning filmmaker who has screened her documentaries in USA, Ghana, Berlin and the Cannes Film Festival. Sheppard’s recent publication is Culturally Relevant Arts Education for Social Justice: A Way Out of No Way. In addition, she facilitates workshops and lectures on creativity and finding creative pathways.
Through her production company, Jimmie Lewis Productions, she is currently in production of a documentary Swinging with no Hands on education, compassion and activism within prison. Swinging With No Hands presents character driven stories of transformation, compassion and activism within prison. It presents a human face and voice to the triumph of the human spirit while exposing the crisis of punishment in the USA. It follows men and women of Washington State prisons, incarcerated, between 13 and 25 years of age, for violent crimes. They share compelling stories of life before and after incarceration, giving vivid testimony of prison life and its impact on transformation and mercy. Swinging explores the tensions between crime, compassion and justice inviting viewers to look and hear incarcerated men and women in order to understand processes of transformation, mercy and their ultimate role, as models for us all.
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