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1.

Quiet Rage: The Stanford Prison Experiment

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Discusses a prison simulation experiment conducted in 1971 with students at Stanford University and considers the causes and effects that make prisons such an emotional issue. Documentary includes new film, flashback editing, follow-ups 20-years later, and an original music score; reveals the chronology of the transition of good into evil, of normal into the abnormal.
Online
2004; 1988
2.

Two Towns of Jasper [electronic resource]

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A documentary about the trials of the three men implicated in the murder of James Byrd, Jr. Byrd was beaten, chained to a pickup truck, and dragged to death in Jasper, Tex. on June 7, 1998. Through interviews, this film examines the effect that the murder and the trials had on the townspeople and race relations within the town. Black townspeople were filmed and interviewed by a Black crew and Whites by a White crew.
Online
2005; 2002
3.

Public Enemy #1 [electronic resource]

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Chronicles the life of John Dillinger, from his first youthful brush with the law to his death a decade later in a hail of bullets. It explores how, at a time of great hardship, Americans felt more admiration for a daring criminal than their seemingly ineffectual institutions of government.
Online
2005; 2002
4.

The Massie Affair [electronic resource]

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In the early 20th century, the U.S. Navy dominated Hawaii. Most Americans thought of the islands as a Pacific paradise, but in 1931, a dark incident shattered the tranquil veneer of the islands and exposed growing racial tensions. The wife of a Navy liutenant accused 5 local men of rape. One man was killed. In the trial that followed, celebrity attorney Clarence Darrow offered an impassioned defense on behalf of the husband, calling the murder an "honor killing."
Online
2005
5.

The New Asylums [electronic resource]

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Fewer than 55,000 Americans currently receive treatment in psychiatric hospitals. Meanwhile, almost 10 times that number, nearly 500,000, mentally ill men and women are serving time in U.S. jails and prisons. As sheriffs and prison wardens become the unexpected and often ill-equipped caretakers of this burgeoning population, they raise a troubling new concern: Have America's jails and prisons become its new asylums. The program goes deep inside Ohio's state prison system to explore the complex and growing issue of mentally ill prisoners.
Online
2005
6.

Film Noir [electronic resource]

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Explores the genre of Film Noir, which reflected the pessimism and paranoia characteristic of the 1950s. Identifies the characteristics of the genre, including psychological storylines, strong, dangerous female characters, dark scenes and visual effects. Also discusses the censorship code that dictated the films.
Online
1994
7.

Criminal Justice and a Defendant's Right to a Fair Trial [electronic resource]

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Examines the criminal justice system from a legal and social perspective. The seminar format features several attorneys who focus on legal ethics in their discussions of the right of the accused to a fair trial versus the right of society to take measures to assure public safety. Should a lawyer defend a guilty person? This and other questions are debated by Bronx district attorney, Mario Merola; New York mayor, Edward Koch; Dan Rather and others.
Online
1984
8.

Crime and Insanity [electronic resource]

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Utilizes a hypothetical political assassination as a vehicle for exploring the insanity defense and the controversy surrounding psychiatric testimony in the courtroom. Is psychiatric evaluation precise enough to be allowed as testimony in a court of law? U.S. Court of Appeals Judge, Irving Kaufman; Hastings Center President Willard Gaylin, and others discuss the issues.
Online
1984
9.

Crime and Punishments [electronic resource]

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Examines questions about sentencing, what constitutes cruel and unusual punishment, the purpose of prison, and the debate over the death penalty. U.S. Court of Appeals Judge Arthur Alarcon, Federal Bureau of Prisons Director, Norman Carson; government leaders, civil libertarians and journalists discuss the issues.
Online
1984
10.

Citizenship [electronic resource]: Making Government Work

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Case studies from New York City, consider the role of law enforcement in the maintaining citizen's rights. A brief history of police brutality, regulations of police brutality and modification of the regulations post Sept. 11th, provide insight into contemporary views of citizen's rights and civil liberties. In Part 2, reactions to proposed changes to Riverside Park, stress that the essential role of politics is to address the will of the people, but citizen participation is necessary in order for democracy to work. In Part 3, Frank Alvarez, a naturalized citizen from El Savador, recalls how he fought deportation to move from resident alien to citizen.
Online
2003
11.

Civil Liberties [electronic resource]: Safeguarding the Individual

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Examines the First, Fourth, and Sixth Constitutional Amendments to show how the Bill of Rights protects individual citizens from excessive or arbitrary government interference, yet, contrary to the belief of many Americans, does not grant unlimited rights. Case studies include the censorship of a high school newspaper, drug testing for extra-curricular activities in high schools, and media coverage of the Sam Sheppard trial.
Online
2003
12.

Political Parties [electronic resource]: Mobilizing Agents

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Explains how political parties perform important functions that link the public to the institutions of American government. Parties create coalitions of citizens who share political goals, elect candidates to public office to achieve those goals, and organize the legislative and executive branches of government. Examples include the political advancement of Cindy Montañez, Mayor of the city of San Fernando; the 1993 mayorial race in New York City as a revelation of the differences between Democrats and Republican, and how Senator Jim Jefford's 1991 decision to change his allegiance shifted the balance of power in the Congress and directly influenced the investigation of Enron.
Online
2003
13.

To Defend a Killer [electronic resource]

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A panel of American jurists and a philosopher discuss the ethics of criminal justice. The panelists discuss whether lawyers should defend people whom they they know to be guilty and how aggressive should the defense be. They also discuss where to draw the line when it comes to citizens taking matters into their own hands, deterrence versus rehabilitation, and society's right to retribution. Includes commentary by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, defense attorney Jack Litman, and philosopher John Smith of Yale.
Online
1989
14.

Public Trust, Private Interests [electronic resource]

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Jeane Kirkpatrick, Joseph A. Califano Jr., Senator Alan Simpson, Peter Jennings and others address the problems of trust--within government, between one public official and another and between the government and the public. The panelists are asked to consider the hypothetical case of a man whose career starts in the administrative branch and moves on to a position as a senator. When he has troubles early in his career who stands by him and what does he owe his superiors? When he casts votes in Congess, is he the servant of the people or of his conscience?
Online
1989
15.

Truth on Trial [electronic resource]

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A panel of American jurists, a philosopher, and a newspaper editor discuss whether the purpose of a trial is to discover the truth, to achieve justice, or a means of carrying on a private dispute. They also consider whether the trial lawyer is responsible only to his client, or if he has a duty to the court, to the opposition, and to the public. Finally, they discuss what is owed to the public that is affected by the trial, but is not part of it. Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia, Judge Robert Merhige, attorneys Floyd Abrams and Stanley Chesley, philosopher John Smith, and others debate civil litigation's ethical dilemmas.
Online
1989
16.

Personality Disorders [electronic resource]

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Part 5 introduces individuals with narcissistic, anti-social, borderline, and obsessive-compulsive personality disorders, including a murderer and a group of women who mutilate themselves. Explores the challenges involved in both diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.
Online
1992
17.

Exploring Alternatives to Prison and Probation

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When judges pass sentence on convicted criminals, they generally have only two available options: put the offender into prison or put him back on the street with a term of probation. And while, in some cases, these options are sufficient, problems like prison overcrowding, "revolving door" justice, and the high incidence of repeat offenses have caused many people to feel that prison and probation just aren t sufficient tools to do the job. The question is: what would be? This film attempts to answer that question by looking at a range of innovative solutions being tried around the country. We visit five alternative sentencing programs including one in which offenders must perform community service, one which has criminals paying restitution to their victims, and a house arrest progra [...]
Online
1992
18.

Choosing Exile

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Filmmaker Marc Radomsky is third generation South African. His grandfather emigrated from Lithuania to escape pogroms. The family established their roots in Johannesburg and prospered. However Marc and his wife see that growing lawlessness and crime in post-Apartheid South Africa has driven the white community into gated communities where armed guards, attack dogs and barbed wire are the brutal signs of the need for increased security. Marc and his wife Vivianne have made the painful decision to emigrate to Australia. Their close-knit family, threatened with separation, tries to prevail upon the couple to reconsider. The camera captures the painful unravelling of their interconnected lives. Their parents will now be deprived of participating in the lives of their grandchildren, and t [...]
Online
2002
19.

City of Dreams

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Juarez is often called "City of Dreams" because hundreds of thousands of young women have been drawn to this frontier town from the most impoverished regions of Mexico. They aspire to a life free from poverty and free from the male-dominated traditional family and village. Since 1993 over two hundred of these young women have been murdered, and the crimes barely investigated. Many of the victims were assembly-line workers in the over four hundred mostly US-owned factories. This compelling documentary focuses on the social causes at the root of the unsolved murders. The factories, known as "maquiladoras" have brought the city jobs and opportunities otherwise rare in Mexico, but also enormous social changes as a result of free trade and globalization. Mexican human rights activists con [...]
Online
2001
20.

Life Sentence

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Recent statistics indicate that one in 100 Americans are incarcerated. This shocking figure impels us to look closely at our penal system. Tough sentencing rules and release policies have become the norm in the federal system, which is extremely punitive. Life Sentence lets us hear from six formerly incarcerated men and women, some of whom were sentenced as adolescents. They spent from twelve to twenty-six years in prison. Now they must find their way, economically and emotionally, to rebuild their lives after being behind bars, some from the age of sixteen. The film begins as each prisoner prepares for their first parole board hearing. Each is denied and must wait two years until their next hearing. They discuss what brought them to prison, the time spent there, and what it felt lik [...]
Online
2008