Stateville Speaks is a newsletter written by and for incarcerated individuals, their families, those working in the correctional system, and other interested citizens.
Since 2009 the Justice Studies Department has served as the institutional home for the paper, and since that time we have integrated the paper into our course work as an approved internship placement for Justice Studies Majors.
Stateville Speaks emerged from an idea for a prison essay contest. Response to the contest was enormous, and the writing was so good, that Mr. Ryan took the entries and published a book entitled Lockdown Prison Hearts. But writings kept pouring in and the Stateville Speaks newsletter was launched. What began as a few mimeographed pages with 200 readers is today a publication that reaches more than 3,000 inmates, the general population, politicians, and the media. Published three times a year, it is now about 20 pages in length and provides information important to and created by incarcerated individuals, including their original poetry, essays, cartoons, and artwork.
When Mr. Ryan decided to spend more time with his grandchildren and lobbying on behalf of elderly prisoners, he looked around for a permanent home for Stateville Speaks. Thus, in 2009 it moved into the Justice Studies Department at Northeastern Illinois University when Professor Kingsley Clark opened up his classes to the paper. Today, Professor Clark’s former student, Gayle Tulipano, provides the editorial leadership that ensures Stateville Speaks continues to give voice to Illinois’s incarcerated population. Justice Studies students at Northeastern work on the paper as well as answer mail from inmates and relatives of inmates.
Stateville Speaks Archive
Every Stateville Speaks newsletter published since the publication's inception has been converted into PDF format, and can be viewed and downloaded using the links on this page.