Changing Our Lens Part 2 (APA2025.01)

Alisa del Tufo

This is a continuation of Changing Our Lens Fall 2023. New students are encouraged to enroll in order to become acquainted with the philosophy and history of restorative justice as well as the psychological underpinnings of these practices. Students who have already been in other restorative justice classes will work at a deeper level and continue to practice restorative justice on campus.

Restorative Justice is a set of values and practices that are having a considerable impact on the way our justice system, schools, workplaces, conflict zones and communities think about and enact justice. Restorative Justice asks: What if harm doers were given the opportunity to take responsibility and make amends? If survivors were able to be active participants in defining what justice is and how it could be enacted to help them to heal and move on? And if the larger community was involved in this accountability and healing process? It also asks the more elemental question: how can we help people to care more about each other and to heal when harm has been done?

In the current social environment, we are questioning the value and humanity of our current system of “justice”. Given this potential openness to change, it is not enough to say that the American system of punishment does not achieve these goals. Restorative justice claims to provide the structure and philosophy needed to make this transformation to justice more real. But what are the philosophical, psychological, social and emotional values, concepts and practices on which it is built and can be mobilized to support that change? How can we ensure as much as possible that restorative justice is actually restorative and what theory and practices are most valuable in that effort?

Learning Outcomes:
1. Learn about restorative justice; its history, the philosophical underpinnings and the psychological realities it strives to address
2. Deepen knowledge about restorative practice through focused reading and project development
3. Practice restorative justice on campus through offering circles and other restorative practices

Delivery Method: Fully in-person
Course Level: 2000-level
Credits: 4
M/Th 1:40PM - 3:30PM (Full-term)
Maximum Enrollment: 18
Course Frequency: Once a year

Categories: 2000 , Advancement of Public Action , All courses , Four Credit , Fully In-Person , New Courses , Updates