“Welcome to Leith” Screening and Discussion

The Peace & Justice Center is partnering with the Burlington Film Society and Vermont International Film Festival to present a special screening and panel discussion of the feature documentary Welcome to Leith by filmmakers Michael Beach Nichols and Christopher K. Walker.

Chronicling the attempted takeover of Leith, North Dakota by notorious white supremacist Craig Cobb, Welcome to Leith explores the reaction of this tiny mid-western town as it desperately searches for a disrupt Cobb’s plan to turn Leith into a haven for white supremacists. Click here for tickets and further information from VTIFF.

Winner Best Documentary – East End Film Festival, UK
Winner Filmmaker-to-Filmmaker Award – Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival
Winner Grand Jury Prize & Best Editing – Independent Film Festival of Boston
Winner Special Jury Prize – River Run International Film Festival

$8 / $5 Students / FREE for VTIFF Members.

Nonviolence: May the Odds Be Ever in Your Favor?

In the video below as well as in her book Why Civil Resistance Works (co-authored with Maria J. Stephan), Erica Chenoweth examines both violent and non-violent resistance movements around the world from 1900 to 2013 and compares their rates of success against authoritarian regimes. The numbers uncovered by Chenoweth (a former ROTC student) were not what she expected.


“The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution” Screening

The Peace & Justice Center is pleased to work in partnership with VT PBS, UVM’s ALANA Student Center, and Partnership for Change to present a FREE screening of The Black Panthers: Vanguard of the Revolution on February 21st at 7pm in Room 215 of Living/Learning.

Rated 92% by Rotten Tomatoes and 7/10 by IMDb, this provocative film took director Stanley Nelson decades to create as he slowly pieced together thousands of hours of footage and interviews from dozens of people involved with the Panthers during their now legendary rise and fall.

Join us on February 21st for a FREE screening of this thrilling and powerful film!

Read a full review of the film by the A.V. Club here.


Join the PJC in exploring nonviolent strategy in Winooski

We are so excited to be offering our Nonviolent Activism 101 workshop in Winooski in partnership with the O’Brien Community Center on two consecutive Thursday evenings this month. This program was piloted in September and is designed to help people in the community access and explore the strategy of nonviolence movement in the hopes that this information will be used in movements locally. The workshop is broken in the two parts and there is some pre-work and homework so folks are asked to register before and plan to attend both sessions. February 18th will focus on exploring violence and systems of oppression so that the group can see how a nonviolent strategy is effective in taking on oppressive systems. February 25th participants select an issue based working group and develop a coordinated nonviolent response to a particular oppressive policy, institution, structure, and/or practice within our community.

We are looking forward to learning with all participants and building skills and strategy to lift up movements and local efforts that contribute to a just and peaceful world. If you are involved in efforts locally that could be used as a real example for the second day of the workshop please contact Kyle at kyle@pjcvt.org or 863-2345 x6. To register click here or call 863-2345 x6.


Participant feedback from our September workshop:


When asked if participants planned to use the information shared in this workshop in their work…

  • “YES, we will be talking about and trying to use some of what we learned in our [high school club]… we will also talk about [nonviolent action] in terms of our own lives as well as in the work we are doing.”
  • “Information shared in this workshop has contributed to increased awareness on my part of opportunities to identify hurtful situations and make that identification known.”
  • “I already have…”
  • “I would like to use [the nonviolent action] model to frame our discussions around housing organizing projects–I think this may help my group to have more clarity around our goals.”


When asked which part or activity of the workshop was most meaningful and why…

  • “I found all parts/activities well prepared and presented. I was especially pleased to hear the contributions of the students…”
  • “The discussion around the Violence Pyramid and the Cycle of Oppression during Part 1 of the workshop was most beneficial to me. I’ve participated in a number of organizing discussions throughout the years, but have never engaged in a group discussion that used this frame for thinking about the issues. The most meaningful activity was probably the brainstorm around a Coordinated Nonviolent Response to Systems of Oppression (CNRSO). This activity allowed me to answer a lot of questions I’ve been having around my own organizing projects, and showed me some new questions I should be asking myself.”
  • “Our discussions about Violence were interesting and helpful to me. The brainstorming on activism will have the most immediate effect, because some of those ideas will be applied right away…”
  • “The academic/theoretic explanation of the ‘Cycle of Oppression & Visible Direct Violence’… sometimes it does help to see a diagram/flow chart that attempts to make sense out of a feeling that you have that can’t always be articulated clearly”


When asked how their thoughts and feelings about nonviolence changed through this workshop…

  • “I’m growing increasingly interested in the work of Erica Chenoweth and would like to explore her studies into the efficacy of nonviolent actions to enact change.”
  • “…My thoughts have changed in that I have a better understanding of the theory behind [nonviolence] AND had a chance to hear other people’s thoughts, and objections, as well.”
  • “I was surprised that my honesty and willingness to participate increased as we progressed thru this workshop.”
  • “I have been able to relate better to the mission of Black Lives Matter, and make better sense of the discomfort I’ve experienced by the increased police presence in my neighborhood.”