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COC To Present Scholarly Discussion On Prison Privatization

COC To Present Scholarly Discussion On Prison Privatization

The Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center will host a scholarly presentation given by COC professor Karyl Kicenski on Thursday.

Karyl Kicenski, professor of communication studies at College of the Canyons and lecturer at CSUN and UCLA, will present a free scholarly discussion about the privatization of prisons in California, at the Santa Clarita Performing Arts Center at 6 p.m. on Thursday.

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Karyl Kicenski

Kicenski is also the author of “Cashing in on Crime: The Drive to Privatize California State Prisons” and will speak about what she calls the American “prison market” and businesses associated with the construction of prison facilities.

“The privatization of prisons is often justified by the conservative doctrine that private institutions will be both more efficient and effective than government run institutions, “Kicenski said, “and similarly, that the use of prison labor is justified as providing both restitution to the state and job training to the prisoner.”

Instead, Kicenski argues that the prison market has become an enterprise designed to mine wealth from prisoners and points out that California’s inmate population increased six-fold between 1980 and 2000, when the when the state was beginning to privatize prisons.

Her presentation will also analyze of the major forces that she believes contribute to California’s prison market, including the economic structures and practices within the state; the role of politics and public policy in state government and public campaigns; and the ideological representations of delinquency presented in both state and popular rhetoric.

“In viewing privatization from this perspective, we see that the prison is not a dead object of containment or punishment, but rather a productive practice that defines political platforms and candidacy, gives impulse to public policy, promotes particular union interests and constructs, and influences society’s understanding of race and class,” said Kicenski.

"Cashing in on Crime"

The presentation will be followed by a reception at 7 p.m.

Parking is free for all attendees in lots 4, 5, 6, 7 and 8, located off Rockwell Canyon Road adjacent to the PAC.

Seating for the event is on a first come, first serve basis and will begin at 5:30 p.m.

For more information, contact the COC Foundation at 661-362-3434 or click here.

About Dr. Karyl Kicenski

Dr. Karyl Kicenski is a communication studies scholar who received her Master of Arts in Communication Studies from California State University, Northridge and a doctorate in Cultural Studies from George Mason University

Her areas of research have included communication and how it is used to construct ideological appeals to power and agency in contemporary society, as well as analysis about the ways public communication undergirds the social, political and cultural ideologies which enable power and privilege.

Kicenski began teaching at College of the Canyons in 1994 and became a full time faculty member in 1999. She teaches courses in rhetoric, public speaking, communication theory, gender and communication and interpersonal communication.

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COC To Present Scholarly Discussion On Prison Privatization

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