Nine videos to help you talk about the death penalty
By Bashayer Aljaber, Amnesty Speaker Programme Volunteer
Short films and videos can be useful conversation starters for teachers, educators, facilitators or anyone wishing to learn more about human rights. Here are some freely available films about the death penalty.
There may be content that is unsuitable for some audiences, therefore we recommend you watch each clip in full to check that its suitable for the audience before you use it in an educational setting.
1. Amnesty International: Death to the death penalty
This powerful advertising film replicates various scenes of execution using wax figures that melt and leaving the Amnesty candle standing unscathed.
2. AJ+: What if the death penalty disappeared in America?
What are the practical implications of getting rid of capital punishment in the US? This video explains the economic benefits of getting rid of the death penalty, as well as outlining the fact that the death penalty doesn’t deter crime, is disproportionately applied to ethnic minorities and that rulings can get it wrong – innocent people have been killed by the system.
3. Amnesty International: The death penalty in 2015
Every year, we produce a report on the number of known executions around the world, and where they’re happening. 2015 saw the highest number of executions for a quarter of a century. Find out more about executions in 2015
4. Vice: Should there be a death penalty?
Vice News asked people from around the world about their views on the death penalty. This video shows people with a range of opinions and attitudes – with some opposed to, and some in favour of capital punishment.
5. Amnesty International: One last chance
In the US, it is customary to offer inmates on death row an option for their last meal. This animation shows several meal choices in an effort to highlight the theatrical nature of the death penalty in the US.
6. Human Rights Watch: Executing juvenile offenders in Yemen
Yemen is one of the few states that executes juvenile offenders, many of whom admit to alleged crimes after being tortured.
7. National Geographic: Inside death row
This series looks at death row from the perspective of former execution wardens.
8. Amnesty International: Behnoud's story
This moving animation tells the story of a lawyer in Iran, Mohammad Mostafaei, who tries to save the life of a young man on death row, Behnoud Shojaee.
9. One for Ten
For every ten people executed in the US since the death penalty was brought back in 1976, one person is exonerated - ie. found to be innocent of the crimes they're due to be executed for. The One for Ten series comprises ten short films about former death row prisoners in the States who were each found to be innocent and released.
Our blogs are written by Amnesty International staff, volunteers and other interested individuals, to encourage debate around human rights issues. They do not necessarily represent the views of Amnesty International.