Something is Wrong: Exploring the Roots of Youth Violence


Something is Wrong: Exploring the Roots of Youth Violence

6 years ago 6 years ago Published by Leave your thoughts
This toolkit was published by the Chicago Freedom School, Project Nia & Teachers for Social Justice.


This is a curriculum that rejects the traditional conceptualization of youth violence as mainly peer-to-peer violence. In order to truly understand youth violence, it must be re-defined as violence in the lives of young people. Only in this way can the real scope of the problem be grasped and eventually addressed. Most of the perpetrators of youth violence are adults who do harm to young people in a number of settings (at home, at school, in the streets, and at the highest levels of government through detrimental policies).

Violence is a real problem for many young people, though not always or even usually in the form of the sensational incidents that tend to dominate the headlines and create pressure for solutions. As mentioned previously, youth encounter violence in every arena of their daily lives – at home, at school, through the media, or on the streets of their neighbourhoods. This curriculum guide adopts a holistic approach to addressing violence in the lives of young people. Because violence is so prevalent and ubiquitous, these conditions serve to make it seem normal and acceptable even while we desire peaceful lives and a world free of conflict. All of us must make sense of the culture of violence in which we live and of the many messages either glorifying or vilifying it. Throughout this curriculum, we offer a look at some of the roots and practices shaping the culture of violence in the U.S. and provide youth with an opportunity to explore its toll on our overall wellbeing and sense of humanity.

Kaba, M., Mathew, J.C., & Haines, N. (2010). Something is Wrong: Exploring the Roots of Youth Violence. Retrieved from

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