Interest Groups and Social Movements

Klein, B.S.& Pearson, P. (1968). Deciding to Organize. National Film Board of Canada. Even though this is based in an American context, this historical video demonstrates the challenges and procedures involved in creating an organization. It touches on mobilization, representation, and organized groups.

  • What are some of the initiatives proposed by the organization in order to secure a democratically effective organization?

Hyde, L. (1971). City Limits. National Film Board of Canada. This documentary is filmed from an activist’s point of view and shows the trials and tribulations of city life, as well as the role that civic groups play in urbanized activities.

  • According to Jane Jacobs, what are some of the problems associated with urban living?
  • What are some of the contributing factors toward the destruction of communities, as mentioned in the video?

Patton, R. (1977). Mental Patients’ Association. National Film Board of Canada. This is a very touching documentary on an advocacy group that provides support to patients suffering from mental health conditions in the 1970s.

  • How does the MPA provide support through the advocacy group?
  • How does direct democracy play a role in advocating awareness?

Lavoie, R.D. (2001). Rene Dumont: Global Ecologist. National Film Board of Canada. This is a biopic documentary on Rene Dumont, an activist and ecologist, and his vision for a better future for Canada.

  • What inequalities currently exist in the system, as discussed by Rene Dumont?

Edginton, J. (1993). Battle for the Trees. National Film Board of Canada. This is another moving documentary on the battle for environmental protection, with perspectives from citizens, activists, and members of the Indigenous community.

  • What are the similarities and differences in the strategies used by the environmentalists, Indigenous communities, and logging companies to get their message across?

Feige, J. (2014). Above All Else.National Film Board of Canada. Even though this video focusses on the American side of the Keystone Pipeline issue, it does raise a lot of awareness and insight into the dire need for environmental protection at the international level.

  • How did David Daniel organize a protest party?
  • Why is there such a strong sentiment against the construction of the Keystone Pipeline?

The Agenda with Steve Paikin.(2017). Activism, Allyship and Making Change.YouTube. In this video, Steve Paikin discusses some of the challenges associated with activism in getting the message across properly and to the appropriate demographics.

  • What are some of the better or alternative approaches to activism?
  • Where is activism most effective?

Fifth Estate.(2017). Black Lives Matter.YouTube. Black Lives Matter became one of the most popular social movements in Canada and the United States. This powerful video profiles the origins of the movement and the people behind the activism against the mistreatment of African- Americans and African-Canadian communities.

  • What are some of the issues and challenges surrounding the Black Lives Movement?
  • What is the overall mandate for the Black Lives Movement?

The Agenda with Steve Paikin.(2019).#MeToo at Two.YouTube. This video looks at another significant social movement, the #MeToo movement, which gained attention after numerous sexual harassment allegations in North America.

  • How was the #MeToo movement perceived in Canada?
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