Leanne Trapedo Sims, a graduate student in the UHM College of Arts & Humanities Department of American Studies was awarded $20,000 for the 2016-17 Dissertation Fellowship from the American Association of University Women.
Through Sims’ project, “Hawai‘i ’s Women’s Prison: The Role of the Kailua Prison Writing Project and the Prison Monologues as Expressive Pu‘uhonua” (sites of healing), she will continue her research in Hawai‘i’s sole women’s prison.
In pursuit of a doctoral degree, Sims has specialized in understanding women in the prison-industrial complex, women’s life writing, Pacific Island women’s voices, trauma and literary theory. Her research examines social justice failures in the carceral archipelago and explores gender, race, and the nation-state from various angles. She hopes to soon publish her dissertation, “A Cell of One’s Own.”