'Peculiar Patriot' play tackles mass incarceration

- "Peculiar Patriot" is filled with humor. But truth be told, it is just the chosen entry point to make people not directly impacted more likely to learn about the prison industrial complex.

The play is the work of Liza Jessie Peterson, who took on the challenge of teaching poetry and creative writing to a group of young men locked up in Rikers Island in 1998.

The production is a one-person show that has been called a "stinging indictment on the criminal justice system."

In 1998, aside from small activist circles, nobody was talking about the issue. Peterson has dedicated nearly two decades in the field in variety of ways.

The play is showing at the National Black Theatre in Harlem until October 1.

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