Julie Clawson, mom and author of Everyday Justice: The Global Impact of Our Daily Choices, has graciously shared her list of recommended resources in the area of living justly, below. Enjoy these resources and visit Julie’s website as well for more idea on living justly!
How Does God Make Things Happen?, Lawrence Kushner. Shows kids how we can be the hands and feet of God as we serve others around us.
The Peace Book, Todd Parr. Puts peace in concrete terms kids can understand–like there being enough pizza in the world for everyone.
The Lord’s Prayer, Tim Lagwig. Uses just the text of the Lord Prayer, but the illustrations tell the story of a father and daughter helping out an elderly women.
Emma’s Gift, Molly Schaar Idle. A young girl sees the needs in the world and gives away her Christmas gifts to those who need them.
Four Feet, Two Sandals, Karen Lynn Williams. Two refugee girls split use of a pair of donated sandals in the refugee camp as they wait to be resettled.
Wangari’s Trees of Peace: A True Story from Africa, Jeanette Winter. The story of one woman’s commitment to help revitalize the barren land in Kenya by planting trees.
One Hen – How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference (CitizenKid), Katie Smith Milway. How microlending turned life around for a family in Kenya.
Listen to the Wind, Greg Mortenson. The story of building schools in Pakistan to work for peace.
10 Things I Can Do to Help My World, Melanie Walsh. Tangible ways kids can help the earth.
Circles Of Hope, Karen Lynn Williams. A beautiful story of one boy’s struggle to grow a tree for his sick sister and how his solution helped the people of Haiti.
God’s Dream, Archbishop Desmond Tutu. God dreams of a world where all his children join together in peace, reconciliation, and unity.
Books and Movies for Adults (* indicate the ones Julie thinks are best for families or general audiences).
- General Books on Justice
- Green Mama: The Guilt-Free Guide to Helping You and Your Kids Save the Planet, Tracey Bianchi. A practical and easy guide for families seeking to care for the world around them.
- The Irresistible Revolution: Living as an Ordinary Radical, Shane Claiborne. A call to return to the roots of Christianity and live as Jesus did, loving others.
- Everything Must Change: When the World’s Biggest Problems and Jesus’ Good News Collide, Brian McLaren. An exploration of what it means to apply the message of good news of the Kingdom of God to some of the world’s biggest problems.
- Justice in the Burbs: Being the Hands of Jesus Wherever You Live (emersion: Emergent Village resources for communities of faith), Lisa and Will Samson. An overview of the journey of discovering that God cares about justice and that anyone can be involved in seeking justice.
- Fair Trade and Coffee
- Alvarez, Julia. A Cafecito Story: El Cuento Del Cafecito”>A Cafecito Story. White River Junction, Vt.: Chelsea Green Publishing, 2004. This story is about a man who leaves the Midwest to explore the roots of coffee and ends up spending his life developing a fair-trade enterprise.
- Cycon, Dean. Javatrekker: Dispatches from the World of Fair Trade Coffee. White River Junction, Vt.: Chelsea Green Publishing, 2007. An introduction to the people who make our coffee; considers the global issues affecting their lives.
- Stiglitz, Joseph E., and Andrew Charlton. Fair Trade for All: How Trade Can Promote Development. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007. By an economist who won the Nobel Prize, this book offers an in-depth look at global trade practices and fairtrade options.
- Wild, Anthony. Coffee: A Dark History. New York: W.W. Norton, 2004. This is a history of coffee that explores its connection with exploitation through the centuries.
- Slavery and Human Trafficking
- Bales, Kevin. Disposable People: New Slavery in the Global Economy. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1999. An overview of modern slavery that details the causes, tells stories about slavery in various countries and proposes possible solutions.
- Batstone, David. Not for Sale: The Return of the Global Slave Trade— and How We Can Fight It. New York: HarperCollins, 2007. An inspiring look at modern-day abolitionists and the campaign to end human bondage.
- Hunter, Zach. Be the Change: Your Guide to Freeing Slaves and Changing the World. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2007. A youth-oriented action guide for ending modern-day slavery.
- Metaxas, Eric. Bitter Chocolate: The Dark Side of the World’s Most Seductive Sweet. New York: The New Press, 2006. A detailed history of chocolate and its long connection to slavery.
- Energy, Oil, and Climate Change
- Bouma-Prediger, Steven. For the Beauty of the Earth: A Christian Vision for Creation Care. Grand Rapids: Baker Academic, 2001. An overview of the Christian responsibility and privilege of being stewards of God’s creation.
- Lowe, Ben. Green Revolution: Coming Together to Care from Creation. Downers Grove, Ill.: IVP Books, 2009. An exploration of the environment crisis and suggestions for sustainable living.
- Manby, Bronwen. The Price of Oil: Corporate Responsibility and Human Rights Violations in Nigeria’s Oil Producing Communities. New York: Human Rights Watch, 1999. A political report on the oil crisis in Nigeria.
- Reay, Dave. Climate Change Begins at Home. New York: Macmillan, 2005. An exploration of the impact of the typical American, suburban family on the environment and the significant lifestyle changes they need to make to reduce their negative impact.
- Kingsolver, Barbara. Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. New York: HarperCollins, 2007. The beautifully told adventure of a family as they returned to living off the land for a year.
- Pollan, Michael. In Defense of Food. New York: Penguin Press, 2008. A shocking treatise on the industrialized Western diet and its detrimental effects on our bodies and culture.
- Pollan, Michael. An Omnivore’s Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals. New York: Penguin Press, 2007. Pollan traces four meals to their origins and discovers that the main component of much of our food is corn.
- Singer, Peter, and Jim Mason. The Ethics of What We Eat. Emmaus, Penn.: Rodale Books. 2006. A detailed accounting of the ethical issues involved in our food choices.
- Sleeth, J. Matthew. Rising Above Sweatshops: Innovative Approaches to Global Labor Challenges. Westport, Conn.: Praeger Publishers, 2003. A variety of perspectives on how to end our dependence on sweatshop labor.
- Rosen, Ellen Israel. Making Sweatshops: The Globalization of the U.S. Apparel Industry. Berkeley: University of California Press, 2002. A very in-depth look at trade policy, the rise of modern sweatshops and the worldwide dangers they represent.
- Ross, Robert J. S. Slaves to Fashion: Poverty and Abuse in the New Sweatshops. Ann Arbor, Mich.: University of Michigan Press, 2004. This book explores the history of modern sweatshops, the policies that keep them in place, the ethical issues they pose and a variety of approaches to ending the need for them.
- Snyder, Rachel Louise. Fugitive Denim: A Moving Story of People and Pants in the Borderless World of Global Trade. New York: W. W. Norton, 2008. A detailed look at the hardships and horrors of making and selling blue jeans.
- Disposable Lifestyles
- Brown, Edward R. Our Father’s World: Mobilizing the Church to Care for Creation. Downers Grove, Ill.: InterVarsity Press. 2008. A helpful resource that offers a biblical basis for creation care, as well as practical advice for being good stewards.
- Royte, Elizabeth. Garbage Land: On the Secret Trail of Trash. Boston: Little, Brown and Company, 2005. One woman’s exploration of what actually happens to the trash we throw away.
- Ryan, John C., and Alan Thein Durning. Stuff: The Secret Lives of Everyday Things. Seattle: Northwest Environment Watch, 1997. Stories about where our stuff comes from and where it ends up.
- Strasser, Susan. Waste and Want: A Social History of Trash. New York: Metropolitan Books, 1999. A fascinating historical overview of cultural attitudes regarding waste.
- Tammemagi, Hans. The Waste Crisis: Landfills, Incinerators, and the Search for a Sustainable Future. New York: Oxford University Press, 1999. A detailed examination of the ways we deal with waste and suggestions for better future systems.
- Debt and Jubilee
- Roodman, David Malin. Still Waiting for the Jubilee: Pragmatic Solutions for the Third World Debt Crisis. Washington, D.C.: Worldwatch Institute, 2001. A historic overview of international debt and potential solutions to the problem.
- Vallely, Paul. Bad Samaritans: First World Ethics and Third World Debt. Maryknoll, N.Y.: Orbis Books, 1990. An exploration of the debt crisis, which encourages people to move from charity to justice.
- Fair Trade
- Black Gold. Codirected and coproduced by Nick and Marc Francis. 78 min., Fulcrum Productions, 2006. A documentary on Ethiopian coffee farmers seeking a fair price for their efforts.
- Buyer Be Fair. Written and directed by John de Graaf. 57 min., Fox-Wilmar Productions, 2006. A documentary overview of fair-trade certification, and how it helps people and the environment.
- Call+Response. Produced and directed by Justin Dillon. 86 min., Fair Trade Pictures, 2008. An overview of modern-day slavery that uses music to send out the call for action, a call to which we must respond.
- The Price of Sugar. Directed by Bill Haney. 90 min., New Yorker Video, 2007. A documentary looking at the slave-like conditions many Haitians experience in the sugar fields.
- Oil, Cars, and Climate Change
- The 11th Hour. Directed by Nadia Conners and Leila Conners Peterson. 92 min., Warner Home Video, 2007. An exploration of the causes of global warming and everyday suggestions of what we can do to stop it.
- Fuel. Directed by Josh Tickell. 112 min., Blue Water Entertainment, 2008. A hopeful overview of alternative fuel sources.
- An Inconvenient Truth. Directed by Davis Guggenheim. 96 min., Paramount, 2006. Al Gore’s award-winning documentary on the global climate crisis and suggestions for a sustainable future.
- Who Killed the Electric Car? Directed by Chris Paine. 93 min., Sony Pictures, 2006. A look at the economic and political barriers to creating alternative-fuel vehicles.
- Fast Food Nation. Directed by Richard Linklater. 114 min., 20th Century Fox, 2006. A graphic drama that explores the horrors of factory farming, as well as the agricultural exploitation of workers.
- Food, Inc.. Produced and directed by Robert Kenner. 93 min., Magnolia Pictures, 2008. A comprehensive overview of the injustices and dangers present in our highly industrialized modern food system.
- King Corn. Written, produced and directed by Aaron Woolf. 90 min., DOCURAMA, 2007. An exploration of modern American farming and food consumption, which focuses on the main ingredient in our diet: corn.
- The Meatrix Short animated films (based on the Matrix movies) that educate consumers about the factory farm system
- Clothing and Sweatshops
- China Blue. Directed and produced by Micha Peled. 87 min., Teddy Bear Films, 2005. A clandestine look at the hardships faced young girls working in a Chinese blue jean factory.
- The Corporation. Directed by Mark Acbar and Jennifer Abbott. 145 min., Zeitgeist Films, 2005. An exhaustive look at the modernday corporation that pursues profit and power above all else.
- Wal-Mart: The High Cost of Low Price. Directed and produced by Robert Greenwald. 98 min., Brave New Films, 2005. A contrast of the public image Wal-Mart presents, and the human and environmental toll of its actual practices.
- What Would Jesus Buy? Directed by Rob VanAlkemade. 91 min., Arts Alliance America, 2007. A sobering look at America’s addiction to shopping.
- Disposable Lifestyles
- Debt and Jubilee
- Bamako. Written and directed by Abderrahmane Sissako. 117 min., New Yorker Video, 2006. A critically acclaimed political drama, where the citizens of Bamako, Mali, hold international financial organizations accountable for many of Africa’s problems.
- Life and Debt. Produced and directed by Stephanie Black. 80 min., New Yorker Video, 2001. A sobering look at how international debt has changed the economy and people of Jamaica.
Here are a sampling of places where you can shop ethically:
Clothing and Accessories
- Be The Change Elements
- Earth Creations
- Fair Indigo
- Indigenous Designs
- Mata Traders
- No Sweat Apparel
- Simple Shoes
- Tinctoria Designs
- Tom’s Shoes
Food, Coffee, and Gifts
- Cafe Justo
- Equal Exchange
- Land of a Thousand Hills Coffee
- Natural Candy Store
- Ten Thousand Villages
- Trade As One
- World of Good