People of the Books
Films about religious pluralism that go beyond presenting the tenets of each faith are rare. But Three Faiths, One God: Judaism, Christianity, Islam, a two-hour documentary by Gerald Krell and Meyer Odze, not only compares similarities and differences in beliefs and practices, it presents a dialogue among adherents that’s informative and inspiring. When you see a Muslim teenager grappling with what she’s learned from her Jewish friend, and vice versa, you know this is dialogue that can lead to peace. Auteur Productions.
Dying to Live: A Migrant’s Journey is a clear-eyed look at the perils Mexicans face when they cross the U.S.-Mexico border. Theologians, church leaders, activists, and migrants themselves talk about why they leave their homes and risk everything—including their lives—to come to the United States for work and for a dignified life. The 33-minute DVD is an excellent resource for church or school groups.
Justice by the Numbers
Rethinking Mathematics: Teaching Social Justice by the Numbers, edited by Eric Gutstein and Bob Peterson, incorporates real-world issues into math. Sample lessons for students include exercises on how to live on 31 cents an hour, figuring out how the unemployment rate is determined, and the differences in home buying among ethnic groups. Suggestions for teaching and an extensive section of resources make this an extremely useful resource. www.rethinkingschools.org
Into the Wardrobe: C.S. Lewis and the Narnia Chronicles, by David Downing, starts with a brief bio of Lewis and then looks at how each book in the Narnia series came to life. Chapters on the books’ spirituality, the significance of Aslan, and a glossary of Lewis’ invented words make this a lively, intelligent accompaniment to the upcoming movie The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe. Jossey-Bass.