February 27, 2013
"The Meaning of Life"
Location: Sullivan Hall, Room C5
"The Meaning of Life" is a documentary film by Hugh Brody. The film examines Kwikwexwelhp, a prison that is an unusual collaboration between the Chelhalis First Nation and the Correctional Service of Canada. At Kwikwexwelhp, more than half of the inmates are Native and punishment and rehabilitation are pursued according to precepts of Aboriginal spirituality and community. Over half the inmates in Kwikwexwelhp have received life sentences. Can Aboriginal spirituality help people facing life sentences for often horrific crimes find meaning in their everyday lives? As one inmate stated, "You commit yourself to death; you've taken away your life by taking a life ... Where do I go from here?" The film takes the viewer into Kwikwexwelhp and grapples with this question through moving, often difficult interviews with many inmates, It gives us a chance to consider whether social justice and personal redemption can be achieved through an embrace of Aboriginal concepts.