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How Do You Spell Murder? Illiteracy and Crime

Nationwide, 70 percent of state and federal prisoners are illiterate. This means that many offenders convicted of murder cannot even spell it. Filmed on location at New Jersey State Prison, this powerful documentary spotlights a flourishing inmate-run literacy program called L.I.F.E., Learning Is For Everyone. It also asks to what degree illiteracy and undiagnosed learning disabilities contribute to a drift toward delinquency and crime. Interviews with L.I.F.E. participants and footage of one-on-one classes, a tutor-training seminar, and the Prose and Cons Poetry Workshop illustrate the program’s positive impact. An HBO Production. (40 minutes)

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