An homage to the life of poet, writer, and teaching artist Judith Tannenbaum and her impact on incarcerated and marginalized students.
The Book of Judith honors Judith Tannenbaum but also reflects, through both form and content, on the complexities of seeing both the parts and the whole. The book presents different aspects of Judith–poet, teaching artist, friend, mentor, colleague–through a collection of original poetry, prose, essay, illustration, and fiction from 33 contributors. In so doing, it echoes her own determination to perceive contradiction without judgment. For the next generation of teaching artists in Corrections and elsewhere, the book serves as an inspiration on the qualities needed to survive and thrive in a multi-faceted, ever-changing environment.
The book is divided into four sections, separated by riveting black and white pencil drawings inspired by the lives of those serving life in prison without possibility of parole. In Unfinished Conversations, contributors share their bond with Judith Tannenbaum through prose and excerpts from letters both real and imagined. In the second section, After December, poets reflect on the life, artistry, and legacy of Judith. The third section, Looking and Listening, focuses on the truth-seeking qualities that Judith brought to her work. The fourth section, Legacy, features work from winners of an award and a fellowship bestowed in her name.