Warden

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Identity   Interpreter
Profession : Warden of Saint Quentin prison  

Philip Abbott :
July 30 1984 (# 1)

Portrait

Paternalist figure of the Saint Quentin prison, he is however its head warden. And yet sometimes, he is able to get along with some of his prisoners. And it is the case with the Perkins prisoner. Because even if he does not say it clearly, he doubts of his culpability. He finds in Joe a small I do not know what that the other prisoners do not have... And, contrarily to the police officer who accompanies him, he perfectly feels this difference between him and the other prisoners : perhaps the innocence.

It is not without relief that he comes to announce to Joe in person, and not in his office because he finds him  in the middle of the other prisoners, in the prison court doing exercises, that he is released today for good behaviour : his release has just been accepted. His own words towards the prisoner are simple and foul of a kind of affection. Whereas he is doing physical exercises, Joe does not immediately realize the good news. This is only when the other prisoners congratulate him that Joe starts to realize what is going on. Spontaneously, the warden warmly shakes his hand.

Then, he joins Joe Perkins in his cell, whereas he is finishing his bag. And, because he fears for his future, he advises to him not to go back to Santa Barbara. He hopes that he will leave for another destination, it does not matter which one - the United States are wide - to begin a new life. And because he knows that his advices will not be used, before seeing him leaving from Saint Quentin, he wishes him good luck for the future. He looks after Joe leaving the prison, under the eyes of the other prisoners.

Character of only one episode, the head warden allows to present Joe's uprightness : this is not all the Saint Quentin prisoners who have the right of the same treatment. He also and especially allows us, for the continuation, to line up at Joe' side, rather than of his father's, John, when this one will refuse the family roof to him and will withdraw his confidence to him. Somewhere, the head warden places in Joe the confidence that his father did not want to give him...

Portrait written for this site by Lilian

The photos of the warden
Philip Abbott