States of Incarceration: A National Dialogue of Local Histories

Oct. 5 to 21, 2016, 3 a.m. to noon

States of Incarceration is the first national traveling multi-media exhibition and coordinated public dialogue to explore the history and future of mass incarceration in the United States. UTSOA students led by Professor Sarah Lopez partnered with a New School-led coalition of 500 university students and formerly incarcerated individuals from 20 cities to create the traveling exhibition.


A web-based platform,, accompanies the exhibit. UTSOA students created work that specifically addresses immigrant detention entitled, Spatial Stories of Migration and Detention.

States of Incarceration is a project of Humanities Action Lab, a collaboration between the University of Texas at Austin and 19 others, led by The New School, working with issue-based organizations and public spaces to foster new public dialogue on contested social issues. Partnering universities include: Arizona State University, Brown University, DePaul University, Duke University, Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis, Northeastern University, Parsons Paris, Rutgers University-Newark, Rutgers University-New Brunswick, Skidmore College, The New School, University of California, Riverside, University of Connecticut, University of Massachusetts Amherst, University of Miami, University of Minnesota, University of New Orleans, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, University of Texas at Austin, and Vanderbilt University.


This project was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services, National Endowment for the Humanities, Whiting Foundation, Open Society Foundations, Mellon Foundation, and TenLegs.

Instagram: @statesofincarceration

Hashtag: #StatesofIncarceration