UVSC to Hold Second Annual Death Penalty Symposium
For the second consecutive year, the Integrated Studies Program at UVSC is holding a symposium on the Death Penalty. This year's keynote speaker is Sister Helen Prejean, author of Dead Man Walk ing. Her book, now made into a film (starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn) and an opera, tells the true story of how she became involved in trying to stop the Death Penalty.
In addition to Sister Helen we're excited to have Robert Johnson, Professor of Justice, Law, and Society at American University, Michael Radelet, Professor of Sociology and Chair, Department of Sociology, University of Colorado, Boulder, Mark Warren, Director of Human Rights Research and Daniel Medwed, Professor of Law at the University of Utah.
A conference organizer, Alan Clarke, Associate Professor of Integrated Studies at UVSC, feels that this years conference will be even more exciting than last years. Sister Helen Prejean's insights into this nations system of capital punishment is sure to draw a large crowd. Be sure to get your seat early! Immediately after her keynote address there will be an opportunity to meet Sister Helen, purchase one of her books and get it signed.
In addition to several panel discussions and presentations from the various participants there will be two film screenings. We'll be treated to "After Innocence" and "Dead Man Walking". The 2nd Annual Death Penalty Symposium has been organized by Alan Clarke, Laurelyn Whitt and Sandy McGunigall-Smith, all of Utah Valley State.
Sister Helen Prejean
Sister Helen has spent her life fighting capital punishment. A Roman Catholic nun associated with the Sisters of St. Joseph of Medaille. In 1981 she became a penpal to a convicted murderer, Elmo Sonnier. Mr Sonnier had been sentenced to death and he asked her to be his spiritual advisor. This led to her being present for his execution, and to her involvement as a leading spokeperson against the Death Penalty. She wrote the autobiographical Dead Man Walking (1993, Random House. ISBN 0-679-75131-9) which was turned into a film starring Susan Sarandon and Sean Penn in 1995.
She is associated with The Moratorium Campaign to end capital punishment.