S3E2 - Restorative Justice

Beyonce Lemonade

Ready to rethink what justice might look like in courts, schools, nations, and even our personal lives? In this episode, we take on restorative justice, the fledgling movement to engage victims and perpetrators (yes, we know, a loaded word!) of all kinds in constructive dialogue. This model offers a powerful alternative to the punitive paradigm of the American incarceration system, and ideally can lead to understanding, growth, and community-building. Human Rights lawyer and all-around badass Beth Compa talks us through some practical applications of RJ, and we get into both its promise and limitations. And along the way, we brush up on theories of justice (haaaayyy John Rawls), connect to themes from past eps, AND use a restorative justice lens to analyze her royal highness Queen Bey’s LEMONADE. Sorry, we ain’t sorry. 

Links to Stuff We Talk About


John Rawls, A Theory of Justice (Harvard University Press, 1971) https://books.google.com/books/about/A_Theory_of_Justice.html?id=vcVEPc30ut0C

"About Restorative Justice," Centre for Justice & Reconciliation, A Program of Prison Fellowship International. http://restorativejustice.org/restorative-justice/about-restorative-justice/


Carly Berwick, "Zeroing out Zero Tolerance." The Atlantic. March 17, 2015. http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2015/03/zeroing-out-zero-tolerance/388003/

Paul Tullis, "Can Forgiveness Play a Role in Criminal Justice?" New York Times Magazine. January 4, 2013. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/01/06/magazine/can-forgiveness-play-a-role-in-criminal-justice.html.

Melinda D. Anderson, "Will School-Discipline Reform Actually Change Anything?" The Atlantic. September 14, 2015. http://www.theatlantic.com/education/archive/2015/09/will-school-discipline-reform-actually-change-anything/405157/.  


Growing Fairness. Teachers United (2013). http://www.teachersunite.org/documentary

Code of Hammurabi https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Code_of_Hammurabi

South Africa's Truth and Reconciliation Commission: http://www.justice.gov.za/Trc/

Ira Glass, (Narrator). (2016, August 26). "Deep End of the Pool," (No. 595) [Audio podcast] - includes a great story about a private lawyer drafted to become a public defender, and what he learns about that system. This American Lifehttp://www.thisamericanlife.org/radio-archives/episode/595/deep-end-of-the-pool?act=1


Beyonce's Lemonade (2016) http://www.beyonce.com/album/lemonade-visual-album/

Equal Justice Initiative https://eji.org/

In Theory S1E4:  Childhood http://www.intheory.us/episodes/2015/7/1/childhood-those-golden-years-or-are-they (relevant to our conversation on schools)

In Theory S3E1:  Self Help http://www.intheory.us/episodes/2016/10/18/s3e1-self-help (relevant to our conversation on adversarial systems and the fetishization of competition)

Guest Speaker BIO! Most recently a staff attorney at the Promise of Justice Initiative, Beth Compa began her career with the Southern Center for Human Rights in Atlanta, where she examined the effects of privatization on Georgia’s prison and misdemeanor probation systems. Beth holds a B.A. in History from NYU (2004) and a J.D. from Yale (2011), where she was Editor in Chief of the Yale Human Rights and Development Law Journal, a director of the Rebellious Lawyering conference, and a member of the Detention & Human Rights clinic.

Posted on October 27, 2016 .