Films About Social Justice and the Social Economy

It is important to research and produce literature on the social economy, but it is equally important to disseminate this research in a way that is accessible to a broader audience. Filmmakers do this through films and documentaries, interviewing experts and following real life examples to give visual evidence of social justice and the social economy from both the United States and around the world. This section divides these works into four categories. Ecology and Sustainability features films which show real world examples of sustainability as well as films that explore the theoretical and practical implications of ecological issues. Fair-trade and Consumerism highlights works that discuss both ethical and unethical consumption practices. Films found in Social Solidarity and the Fight for Rights document real life issues and how communities are organizing around them. Workplace Democracy and Community Development focuses on documentaries that follow working communities and businesses all over the world.

Ecology and Sustainability

The Barcelona Blueprint, 2002, Bullfrog Films: Documenting the city of Barcelona and its sustainable city planning.

Beyond Organic: The Vision Of Fairview Gardens, Bullfrog Films: A model of community supported agriculture in the midst of suburban sprawl.

Cultivating Change, 2001, Bullfrog Films: Exploring the ways in which gardens can be vehicles for change.

Food, 2000, Bullfrog Films: Devising a sustainable food system – one that is healthy, accessible, and affordable.

My Father’s Garden, 1995, Bullfrog Films: A film exploring sustainable agriculture and the contrast between chemical and organic farming.

Subdivide and Conquer, 1999, Bullfrog Films: A short film discussing the causes and remedies of suburban sprawl.

Fair-trade and Consumerism

Affluenza: A film discussing the problems with competitive consumerism and some possible solutions.

The Corporation: A documentary about corporate power and abuse, and emerging socially responsible corporations.

Social Solidarity and the Fight for Rights

Doing the Right Thing, 2002, Bullfrog Films: A short film documenting the success the city of Porte Alegre has had with a process called the Participatory Budget.

Motherhood Manifesto: A film that not only shows what is wrong but what we can and are doing to improve the lives of American mothers.

Union Maids: A film focusing on women organizers talking about union organizing in the 1930s.

Workplace Democracy and Community Development

Beyond the Bottom Line: A half an hour long film following 14 worker cooperatives throughout the United States.

Civilizing the Economy: The Co-op Alternative: Part 1 of Civilizing the Economy deals with co-operation in a market economy, by examining the phenomenal success of Emilia Romagna in northern Italy, which is perhaps the worlds’ most successful example of a co-operative economy.

Democracy in the Workplace: A half an hour long film focusing on three Bay Area cooperatives and how they run their businesses and deal with problems in a democratic manner.

Livelyhood (1998), Episode 3: Honey, We Bought the Company: This film present a series of different companies in the United States and how they have structured their business ‘to survive corporate restructuring.’

The Mondragon Experiment, 1980, BBC: A documentary about the creation of the Mondragon system of cooperatives.

My Mother Built This House: A film about a large homeless contingent which has organized to provide shelter for their community.

The Take: A documentary following 30 unemployed auto-parts workers who work to restart their former place of employment.

Works Cited:
Rapp, G. Revised 1995. What are cooperatives? U.S. Department of Agriculture, RBCDS/Cooperative Services, Cooperative Information Report 10. Online. Retrieved September 1, 1999.

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