For those who have no voice

Publish date 21-01-2023

by Chiara Genisio

Podcasts, photographs and images give a voice to those locked up in prison. Projects and initiatives are born in various prisons to make the reality of the prison world known to the outside world, to help prisoners regain their dignity and take the road towards their reintegration into society. It happens in the Civitavecchia prison where the journalist Federica Manzitti has given life to the project La Scena invisibili in collaboration with the AdDentro Company and the Sangue Giusto Association. The pinnacle of this project is where the inmates talk about their relationship with their mother.

Each episode is a story, their name as the title (Fabio, Maurizio, Gert, Vincenzo, Obi, Francesco, Mirko, Edoardo) - and each one tells of how they lived a relationship that was as intimate as it was universal.
Each of them followed a podcasting workshop, during which they learned audio editing techniques, the use of audio editing software and storytelling. "I wanted to lead them to a narrative of themselves that wasn't their own criminal and prison history," says Manzitti.
"The theme of the mother - explains the journalist - stirs important issues for those in prison: guilt, innocence and the need to retrace one's life in a more profound way".
From voice to image, to "peek inside a prison". The exhibition Ri-scatti. For me si va tra la perduta gente in the Pavilion of Contemporary Art (PAC) in Milan has restored faces and glimpses of a world unknown to many.

800 unpublished photographs and videos taken in the Milanese institutions (of Opera, Bollate, San Vittore and the Beccaria juvenile penal institution) were selected. For the first time, inmates and penitentiary police officers were able to use filming tools (photographic and video) in prisons: a choral effort, the result of an 11-month course, which saw the participation of 60 inmates and 40 officers. Two worlds that too often have been represented as opposed, but that both share the same daily life, which shouldn't be exasperated in a conflict that does no one any good.
The initiative was sponsored by the Ministry of Justice, was organized by the PAC and by Ri-scatti Onlus, the association that has been carrying out social redemption initiatives for several years through photographic evidence, and promoted by the Municipality of Milan.

Chiara Genisio
NP November 2022

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