The best restorative justice books 📚

Browse the best books on restorative justice as recommended by authors, experts, and creators. Along with notes on why they recommend those books.

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Book cover of The End of Policing

The End of Policing

By Alex S. Vitale

Why this book?

Vitale is not calling for the abolition of police departments. He details the dramatic growth of these departments and notes police in America use their weapons more than any other police force of developed democracies. Blacks are disproportionately the victims of police killings. Policies like racial profiling and a “warrior mentality” on the part of cops are major reasons why police assault on black people is so widespread.

Police must take on a number of tasks in which they are not qualified to do, such as dealing with the mentally ill and homeless population. In addition, Vitale writes about a…

From the list:

The best books on race and policing

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Book cover of Getting the Buggers to Behave

Getting the Buggers to Behave

By Sue Cowley

Why this book?

I began teaching when I was 13 years old. I ran a drama school for primary school-aged children (yep, type-A). From then on I was always teaching. As I continued, through my teens and into my twenties I thought it important to get some outside input and not just regurgitate my old teachers! Sue's books were one of the first I picked up.

With so few women's voices in places of influence when it comes to Behaviour in British Schools, it was a particularly poignant read for me. Its down-to-earth, on-the-ground perspective appealed hugely, as well as its practical help.…

From the list:

The best books to shift challenging behaviour in schools

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Book cover of Until We Reckon: Violence, Mass Incarceration, and a Road to Repair

Until We Reckon: Violence, Mass Incarceration, and a Road to Repair

By Danielle Sered

Why this book?

This first book is nonfiction, but it’s a key book for carving out the imaginative space that makes nonviolence make sense. If you’re like me, you grew up taking for granted that locking up people who do crimes (a form of state violence) is the gold standard for keeping everyone else safe. Nonviolence, the reasoning goes, may be more morally pure, but at the cost of being effective. Sered’s book takes a hammer to this assumption, methodically dismantling the myth that the carceral system does much at all to support victims’ healing and safety. Until We Reckon provides a critical…

From the list:

The best books where nonviolence changes the world

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Book cover of The Groundings with My Brothers

The Groundings with My Brothers

By Walter Rodney

Why this book?

This is a series of essays that examine the importance of bringing historical knowledge to the community and also providing concise accurate information on African history and Caribbean and African American assertions for moving beyond the imposed limitations. It is preceded by a timely introduction and followed by a series of essays which reflect on the contributions of one of the most important Caribbean historians of the African experience who lived a life which manifested the Caribbean radical-intellectual tradition.

From the list:

The best books on Caribbean reparative justice

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Book cover of The Myth of Overpunishment: A Defense of the American Justice System and a Proposal to Reduce Incarceration While Protecting the Public

The Myth of Overpunishment: A Defense of the American Justice System and a Proposal to Reduce Incarceration While Protecting the Public

By Barry Latzer

Why this book?

Is our criminal justice system too harsh or too lenient on crime? To answer this question, Barry Latzer, retired professor at John Jay, offers both facts and historical perspective in his history of punishment since colonial days. Latzer does not gloss over the historic racism and cruelty of policing in the U.S. but shows that today most people in prison are actually there for committing violent crimes, and that the new technology of “e-carceration” can further reduce prison populations while improving public safety.

From the list:

The best books on how to make cities safer and help poor children learn and grow

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Book cover of Beyond Coloniality: Citizenship and Freedom in the Caribbean Intellectual Tradition

Beyond Coloniality: Citizenship and Freedom in the Caribbean Intellectual Tradition

By Aaron Kamugisha

Why this book?

Kamugisha, is an able representative of a new generation of scholars who offers a contemporary examination which presents some of the theoretical issues and ideas that inform Caribbean studies and history. The reader will get a good sense of some of the major historical contributors who have shaped Caribbean history, philosophy, and culture as they attempted to move “beyond” the colonial experience.

From the list:

The best books on Caribbean reparative justice

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