State Sanctioned

A clearinghouse for information, analysis, and resources related to state sanctioned violence in the United States

Films and other Media for Classroom Use

American Lynching: A Documentary Feature – explores Jim Crow lynching, its historical context, specific incidents, and underpinning attitudes

Anatomy of Violence (1967) – presents several speeches on the relationship of violence to social reform, from a Congress on the Dialectics of Liberation held in London; speakers include Professor Herbert Marcuse of UC, Paul Goodman, Stokely Carmichael, and Allen Ginsburg

Angola for Life – short documentary series from The Atlantic exploring the infamous Angola prison in Louisiana

Bullfrog Films – educational videos on a variety of social justice topics. Of particular interest are their collections on race and racism and national security

Death of Two Sons – tells the story of Amadou Diallo, killed by police officers in 1999, alongside the story of an American Peace Corps Volunteer who was living with Diallo’s family in Guinea.  (archived)

Decoded: Victim Blaming and Police Brutality – mini-episode from MTV that explores how media ‘blame the victim’ after episodes of police brutality.

#EndYouthSolitary – YouTube video from the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights, featuring the voices of youth who have been held in solitary confinement.

Freeway: Crack in the System – documentary produced by Al-Jazeera America, centers the rise, fall and redemption of “Freeway” Rick Ross, a street hustler who became the King of Crack, and journalist Gary Webb, who broke the story of the CIA’s complicity in the drug war

Ghosts of Abu Ghraib – HBO-produced documentary regarding torture in the Abu Ghraib military prison

The Hunted and the Hated – in-depth examination of NYPD’s ‘stop and frisk’ policy, and its impact on communities of color

I am Sean Bell – young black men and boys reflect on the tragic death of Sean Bell, and their identification with his plight

Law and Disorder – Frontline episode (on-air) and online exhibit concerning the actions of New Orleans Police officers during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, focusing especially on the Danziger Bridge shootings. (archived)

No Mas Bebes – PBS/Independent Lens (documentary), tells the story of a group of Mexican immigrant women who sued after they were sterilized at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center during the late 1960s and early 1970s

The Sentence Unseen – documentary focusing on the impacts of the US criminal justice system when family members are taken away; sheds light on the collateral consequences of arrest and incarceration on children, youth, families, and communities while celebrating their resiliency

Sentenced Home – documentary follows three Cambodian Americans through the deportation process; caught between their tragic pasts and an uncertain future, each young man confronts a legal system that offers no second chances

Traffic Stop – Short animated video from StoryCorps about an African American man raised to believe skin color doesn’t matter, whose belief in color-blindness is challenged after a violent encounter with Denver Police during a routine traffic stop.

The Videos that are Putting Race and Policing into Sharp Relief, New York Times, July 30th, 2015

Visions of Abolition, produced by Critical Resistance in 2011, a documentary about the prison-industrial complex and the prison abolition movement

We Deserve Better – created by LGBTQ youth of color for New Orleans Police Department, for use in their officer training programs

Welcome to Leith – What happens when a white supremacist attempts to take over the government of Leith, a tiny North Dakota ghost town with a population of 25? Welcome to Leith offers a glimpse into a town struggling against one man’s extremist vision, in the shadow of the biggest oil boom in North Dakota’s history. Watch a trailer, or learn more at IMDB and Sundance.

Where Is Hope: The Art of Murder – a documentary that explores police brutality against people with disabilities

White People – Produced by MTV, narrated by Jose Vargas; explores white identity and privilege

The Video Project – collections of films and educational media on a variety of important topics (search site or browse by category)

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