March 17th, 2016
Episode 370 of 576 episodes
The arts led revival in post war Germany. In the ruins of the Reich, British, American and anti-Nazi German artists and writers were employed to reshape German culture after 20 years of Nazism. For most prisoners serving life terms, survival is often an achievement. So when somebody finds real redemption from a former life of crime it is notable. With the help of prison psychologist Joan Branton, Erwin James worked to overcome his life of crime and violence, becoming firstly a prison letter writer, then progressing to become a journalist for the Guardian newspaper reporting from within the prison walls. He was released in 2004 and continues his journalism and writing. He is a fellow of the Royal Society for the Encouragement of the Arts and is a trustee of the Prison Reform Trust.