The Arts of Desistance: Assessing the Role of Arts‐Based Programmes in Reducing Reoffending

17 Pages Posted: 3 Nov 2016

See all articles by Leonidas K. Cheliotis

Leonidas K. Cheliotis

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration

Aleksandra Jordanoska

Keele University - Keele School of Law

Date Written: May 2016

Abstract

This article offers a critical review of the empirical research literature on the ‘secondary’ or ‘soft’ contributions that arts‐based programmes may make to the process of desistance from crime. We begin by focusing on evaluations of arts‐based programmes run by practitioners inside prisons, and then proceed to address the effects of arts‐based prison programmes after participants' release into the community; a theme that has received very limited research attention to date, and even less attention in extant literature reviews. In the next section of the article, we briefly discuss, for illustrative purposes, our own evaluation of an arts‐based programme that is aimed at prolonging and enhancing ‘secondary desistance’ through providing ex‐prisoners with opportunities to continue engaging with the arts after release. We conclude with a few short remarks as to the lessons that can be drawn from this article for the design of arts‐based programmes in the field of criminal justice.

Keywords: desistance, arts in criminal justice, research evaluation, criminal justice policy

Suggested Citation

Cheliotis, Leonidas K. and Jordanoska, Aleksandra, The Arts of Desistance: Assessing the Role of Arts‐Based Programmes in Reducing Reoffending (May 2016). The Howard Journal of Crime and Justice, Vol. 55, Issue 1-2, pp. 25-41, 2016, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2863483 or http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/hojo.12154

Leonidas K. Cheliotis (Contact Author)

London School of Economics & Political Science (LSE) - Department of Social Policy and Administration ( email )

Houghton Street
London, England WC2A 2AE
United Kingdom

Aleksandra Jordanoska

Keele University - Keele School of Law

Staffordshire
United Kingdom

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