Study Guide: Questions & Topics

EMAJ recommends group discussion of questions and topics, by organizing the people who attend a study session according to three breakout groups (A, B, C, below). Suggested topics might be the following.



  1. What in this film inspires people? What inspired you?

  2. How would you bridge between the film’s inspiring points and actually building a movement in your community, on your campus, or as you contribute to the national and international movement for Mumia and political prisoners.



  1. In what concise ways can you present the key historical factors, in Philadelphia and in the nation’s history occurring at the time of Mumia’s assault and arrest?

  2. What other events were going on at the time of Mumia’s early imprisonment in 1981/1982, in the early years of the Reagan presidency?

  3.  What was unique about the situation during Frank Rizzo’s term as Mayor of Philadelphia? Who is Ed Rendell and what was his connection to the Rizzo regime?

  4. How did the City’s treatment of the MOVE Organization relate to Mumia’s case.

  5. Build a list of key historical figures relating to Mumia’s case and its history.



  1. What for you are the broader political issues that make Mumia’s case and journey more than just about Mumia? Consider how you would say that Mumia’s case is pertinent to larger structural dynamics of (a) mass incarceration, (b) police violence, (c) the “war on drugs,” (d) the death penalty, (e) economic dispossession in the U.S., (f) white racism, and (g) U.S. imperialism and its aims for global sovereignty. See at the EMAJ site: “Why Mumia Matters”.

  2. Identify the power-holders in Mumia’s case – in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on the national scene?

  3. Where are the weakest points that might be targeted in the power structure that have denied due process to Mumia, and continue to repress his voice?

  4. Designate one or two members to research radio commentaries or writings by Mumia that connect political issues to one another and to the issues bearing on Mumia’s case. Prison Radio is a key resource here, but don’t forget Mumia’s own published books and essays!

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