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A hybrid animated / live-action documentary exploring the past, present and future of Peacemaking Circles, and how this ancient restorative justice practice has been reimagined to keep youth out of prison. The film tracks the parallel stories of a troubled teen facing serious jail time, and the former Cambodian gang leader serving as his mentor.

"How can we live together without harming each other? And what do we do when harms occur? To respond to these questions, the criminal justice system relies primarily on the threat of punishment to prevent harm and the execution of punishment to change harmful behavior. In other words, it uses a system of external controls to maintain social order. This method exerts “power over” — the power of state authority over individuals — to react to crime and to make society safe. Circles, on the other hand, engage “power with” — the power of people and communities to connect positively, to confront harms, to address deeper causes, and to seek transformation."

 

From "Peacemaking Circles: From Crime to Community" by Barry Stuart, Kay Pranis & Mark Wedge

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