Friday, August 31, 2018

Dialogic Cinephilia - August 31, 2018

Agnew, Phillip and Charlene Carruthers. "From the Grassroots to the Ballot Box: How Gubernatorial Candidate Andrew Gillum Won in Florida." Democracy Now (August 30, 2018) ["After progressive candidate Andrew Gillum pulled off a stunning upset in Florida’s Democratic primary for governor Tuesday, putting him on a path to become the state’s first African-American governor, he was attacked within hours by his Republican opponent—handpicked by Trump—who warned voters not to “monkey this up” by supporting Gillum. Even Fox said they they don’t condone his comments."]

"Andrzej Zulawski." Director's Club #126 (March 14, 2017)

Auerbeck, Michael. "White-Collar Criminals Got Off Scot-Free After the 2008 Financial Crisis — and That Helped Fuel President Trump’s Rise." Naked Capitalism (August 28, 2018)

Homan, Robert. "Think Different." The Boston Review (August 21, 2018) ["Apple recently became the first publicly traded American company to be valued at $1 trillion. It is also the world’s single greatest direct cause of inequality. This claim is not polemical, but statistical: Apple redistributes more wealth upward than any corporation or country on the planet."]

"‘Horror Implied, as Opposed to Explained… That’s Michael Mann’s Strength (Will)’—Manhunter." Cinephilia & Beyond (2018) [“Will Graham, the detective in Manhunter, finds himself trapped, stuck to some degree in madness and nightmare. It bores me to present the events of the story in a realist style. My approach instead is to conceptualize the elements of the plot, taking into consideration the various torments of the human spirit. My aim is to exteriorize the spiritual in the Expressionist manner, and this always leads me to reject realism. What drew me to the story was its connection to the essence of evil, which emerges in the process of dehumanization that leads a simple human being with no exceptional past to become a killer capable of the most terrible atrocities. And when the victims cease being human beings, they become morsels… bits of matter. I want to understand just what this is all about, and also something about dangerous psychopaths, as well as the influence of social context on the behavior of individuals, such as fascism, genocide. This was the theme I explored in The Keep, whose action is set during the Second World War."]

The Miseducation of Cameron Post (USA: Desiree Akhavan, 2018: 90 mins) "Based on the celebrated novel by Emily M. Danforth, Akhavan’s second feature follows the titular character (Chloë Grace Moretz) in 1993 as she is sent to a gay conversion therapy center after getting caught with another girl on prom night. In the face of intolerance and denial, Cameron meets a group of fellow sinners, including amputee stoner Jane (Sasha Lane) and her friend Adam (Forrest Goodluck), a Lakota Two-Spirit. Together, this group forms an unlikely family with a will to fight. Akhavan and Connor evoke the emotional layers of Danforth’s novel with an effortless yet considered attention to the spirit of the ’90s and the audacious, moving performances of the ensemble cast." -- "The Female Gaze" (2018)





Sawari, Amani. "Update on Prison Strike Demanding End of 'Slave Labor': After 10 Days, Protests Spread to 11 States." Democracy Now (August 30, 2018) ["Prisoners across the country join work stoppages, hunger strikes and commissary boycotts in at least 11 states to protest prison conditions and demand the end of what they call “prison slavery.” Organizers report prisoners in South Carolina, Georgia, Florida and Indiana are demonstrating. Individuals in Texas, California and Ohio have gone on hunger strike, including some in solitary confinement. Meanwhile, at least six people have been hunger-striking inside the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Washington, for more than a week. We speak with Amani Sawari, prison strike organizer working on behalf of Jailhouse Lawyers Speak, a network of prisoners who are helping organize the nationwide strike."]

Subissati, Andrea and Alexandra West. "Caved In: The Descent (2005)." The Faculty of Horror #47 (February 20, 2017)

Wilson, Martin. "10 Movie Masterpieces That Can Teach You Everything About Cinema." Taste of Cinema (August 26, 2018)











Thursday, August 30, 2018

ENG 281 (Fall 2018) Student Responses


Cameron Mills 10 (Mad Max: Fury Road; The Shape of Water; Arrival; Moonlight; Prisoners; Embrace the Serpent; Do Not Resist; Polytechnique; 20th Century Women; Spring Breakers)

Evan T. Mobley 10 (Mad Max: Fury Road: The Shape of Water; The Cabin in the Woods; Moonlight; Mulholland Drive; Embrace the Serpent; Polytechnique; Spring Breakers; Adaptation; Lady Bird)

Tristan Sudduth 13 (Mad Max: Fury Road; The Shape of Water; Broken Circle Breakdown; The Cabin in the Woods; Dogs in Space; Icaros: A Vision; Aquarius; Neruda; Arrival; Moonlight; Embrace of the Serpent; Call Me By Your Name; Shortbus)

Jake Anderson 10 (Mad Max: Fury Road; The Shape of Water; Arrival; A Star is Born; Polytechnique; Lady Bird)

Nick Harrod 8 (Mad Max: Fury Road; The Cabin in the Woods; Arrival; Spring Breakers; Polytechnique; Birdman; Prisoners; Moonlight)

Shakaiyla Carroll 1 (Mad Max: Fury Road)

Lydia Merrifield 8 (The Shape of Water; Arrival; Polytechnique; Spring Breakers; Adaptation; Lady Bird; 20th Century Women; Widows)

Ryan Ballard 1 (First Reformed)

Carl Trammel 2 (Moonlight; Mulholland Drive)

Logan Ballard

Talia Geerlings 9 (Neruda; Moonlight; First Reformed; Call Me By Your Name; Shortbus; Canceled Film Elle; The Shape of Water)

Kyler Longworth

Marsha Davis



Professor

Michael Benton


Recommended Responses:

Cameron Mills: Do Not Resist

Lydia Merrifield: Arrival

Lydia Merrifield: The Shape of Water

Nick Harrod: Polytechnique

Jake Anderson: Lady Bird

Tristan Sudduth - Embrace of the Serpent - Looking Beyond the Surface

Tristan Sudduth - Moonlight: More Than What is On the Surface

Tristan Sudduth: Arrival

Evan Mobley: Embrace the Serpent

Cameron Mills: Moonlight

Talia Geerlings: Moonlight

Evan Mobley: Mulholland Drive

Cameron Mills: Arrival

Jake Anderson: Arrival

Jake Anderson: The Shape of Water

Jake Anderson - Mad Max: Fury Road

Tristan Sudduth: The Shape of Water

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu: 2017 - )






The Handmaid's Tale (Hulu: Bruce Miller, 2017 - )

Alderman, Naomi. "Dystopian Dreams: How Feminist Science Fiction Predicted the Future." The Guardian (March 25, 2017) ["From Mary Shelley to Margaret Atwood, feminist science fiction writers have imagined other ways of living that prompt us to ask, could we do things differently?"]

Atwood, Margaret, Roger Berkowitz and Sally Parry. "From Hannah Arendt to The Handmaid's Tale." The Sunday Edition (May 7, 2017)

Earhart, Reay. "The Real Housewives of Gilead." The Advocate (July 5, 2017)

Handler, Rachel. "On The Handmaid's Tale, Bernie Sanders, and Feminism." MTV News (April 25, 2017)

Meed, Rebecca. "Margaret Atwood, The Prophet of Dystopia." The New Yorker (April 17, 2017) ["Her fiction has imagined societies riddled with misogyny, oppression, and environmental havoc. These visions now feel all too real."]

Judd-Lam, Sarah. "The Handmaid's Tale: A Timely Indictment of Conservative Religion." Ethos (July 24, 2017)

Nussbaum, Emily. "A Cunning Adaptation of The Handmaid's Tale." The New Yorker (May 22, 2017)

Prose, Francine. "Selling Her Suffering." The New York Review of Books (May 4, 2017)

Weigel, Moira. "We Live in the Reproductive Dystopia of The Handmaid's Tale." The New Yorker (April 26, 2017)

Zutter, Natalie. "The Handmaid's Tale Isn't Just Offred's Story Anymore." Tor (April 27, 2017)











Dialogic Cinephilia - August 29, 2018

Arrival (USA: Denis Villeneuve, 2016) Dialogic Cinephilia (Ongoing Archive)

Bessner, Daniel. "Making Sense of Soros." The Dig (August 11, 2018) ["That right-wing people in the US and Europe have made George Soros the answer to so many troubling questions is not very surprising: he's a billionaire, he's Jewish and, unlike most of his cohort, he is an actual intellectual who spends much of his money on substantively progressive causes. Daniel Bessner's essay on him in n+1, however, not only sketches out the right's obsessions but also offers a detailed analysis of Soros as a thinker and philanthropist—coming to the conclusion that Soros' hope for an open and pluralistic society will be forever doomed if we continue to live under the very capitalist system that made him so spectacularly rich. Here's Soros's response in The Guardian. "]

Black Panther (USA: Ryan Coogler, 2018) Dialogic Cinephilia (Ongoing Archive)

Gilbert, Sophie. "The Lazy Trope of the Unethical Female Journalist." The Atlantic (August 20, 2018)

Immigration/Migration/Exile/Refugees Dialogic Cinephilia (Ongoing Archive)

Michael, Maggie and Shireen Al-Adeimi. "AP Investigation: Behind the Scenes in Yemen, U.S.-Backed Saudi Coalition Is Working with al-Qaeda." Democracy Now (August 14, 2018) ["The U.S.-backed, Saudi-led coalition in Yemen has repeatedly cut secret deals with al-Qaeda, even paying its fighters to retreat from towns or join the coalition, a bombshell Associated Press investigation has revealed. The AP probe accuses the United States of being aligned with al-Qaeda in the fight against Yemen’s Houthi rebels, despite claiming to be fighting the extremist group in the region. One senior tribal leader told the AP, “Al-Qaeda wasn’t defeated. It didn’t fight in the first place.” We speak with Maggie Michael, one of the three reporters for the Associated Press who broke the story, headlined “U.S. Allies Spin Deals with al-Qaida in War on Rebels.”"]

"Sergio Leone." Director's Club (March 3, 2017)

The Shape of Water (USA: Guillermo Del Toro, 2017) Dialogic Cinephilia (Ongoing Archive)

"Love is not something that we wind up and something we set or control. It's like art. A force that comes into your life without any rules, expectations or limitations. Love, like art, must always be free." - Hernando, 'Sense8'



















Immigration/Migration/Exile/Refugees/Borders (Ongoing Archive)


Alcaraz, Lalo. "Rachel Maddow Interviews Lalo Alcaraz On His Satirical Movement: Self-Deportation." Huffington Post (February 2, 2012)

Al-Rashid, Ahmad, Phillip Cole and Elspeth Guild. "Who is a Refugee?" London School of Economics and Political Science (October 30, 2017) ["Some people crossing borders are called refugees while others are not. But who is a refugee? What precisely is the relationship between migration and seeking refuge? Can we justify the distinction between refugees, migrants, and displaced people? Our panel discuss whether current legal definitions are in need of modification, and if so, what should be altered and why."]

Armstrong, Sally, Paul Heinbecker and James Orbinski. "Five Freedoms: Freedom from Want." Ideas (April 11, 2019) ["Poverty has always been a defining issue in the quest to build a better world. Most political systems lay claim to the idea that they alone can create a better world. It's a kind of litmus test: if our political systems can't raise almost everyone out of relative poverty, then what exactly have we achieved? Why poverty exists at all in otherwise wealthy, prosperous democratic countries is a very incisive question, and it's not enough to just shrug and say our system is still better than any other alternative. And those alternatives? Dictatorships take us into the abyss. Right-wing libertarianism has little to offer as solutions to poverty. Soviet-style Communism didn't exactly work either, which leaves some version of western liberal democracy, either what we have now, or some variation that is still to emerge. So once we've got past that, and accepted that we've failed on the poverty file, how do we go about making things more equitable right now, making sure that wealth is distributed to those in need, and creating opportunity for the weak to become stronger?"]

Auxier, Jonathan, et al. "Award Winning Authors on Borders, Real and Imagined." Ideas (December 12, 2018) ["Borders are everywhere. They're also a central topic in politics, media, and public conversation, as migrants and refugees continue to arrive on the figurative doorsteps of the nations that they hope will give them a chance at better lives. All around these dividing lines, there blooms debate and defensiveness, as well as the threat of desperation, separation, and violence."]

Barber, William. "Tear Gassing Central American Migrants is Inhumane, Unconstitutional, Immoral." Democracy Now (November 26, 2018) ["U.S. border patrol officers fired tear gas into a crowd of desperate Central American asylum-seekers Sunday in Tijuana, Mexico as some tried to push their way through the heavily militarized border with the United States. Mothers and small children were left gagging and screaming as the tear gas spread. The migrants are from Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador, and are fleeing widespread violence, poverty and mass unemployment. We speak with Rev. Dr. William Barber, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign and president and senior lecturer of Repairers of the Breach."]

Barragán, Nanette. "'Unconscious and Unacceptable': : Rep. Barragán Decries Detention of Migrant Children in Prison Cells." Democracy Now (July 11, 2019) ["Yazmin Juárez, the Guatemalan mother whose child died after being held in an ICE detention center from a lung infection, testified before members of a congressional panel Wednesday. She shared the story of her daughter, 19-month-old Mariee, who died last year shortly after being released from the South Texas Family Detention Center in Dilley, Texas. Juárez filed a $60 million lawsuit against the Department of Homeland Security, Immigration and Customs Enforcement, Customs and Border Patrol and the Department of Health and Human Services. The House subcommittee convened to examine the treatment of refugees in U.S. detention, just over a week after lawmakers flocked to the U.S.-Mexico border to observe the horrible treatment of refugee children and families in immigration jails amid reports of continued unsafe and unsanitary conditions for asylum seekers. Meanwhile, NBC reports that migrant children jailed in Yuma, Arizona, have been subjected to mistreatment and sexual violence. We speak with Democratic Rep. Nanette Barragán from California, who recently visited detention centers in Texas. She’s the second vice-chair of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and serves on the House Committee on Homeland Security."]

Blanco, César and Fernando Garcia. "El Paso Shooting Probed as Domestic Terrorism After Anti-Immigrant Gunman Kills 22 People." Democracy Now (August 5, 2019) ["Over the span of 13 hours, the United States was shaken by two mass shootings. Saturday morning, a heavily armed gunman opened fire inside a crowded Walmart in El Paso, Texas, killing 22 people, including a number of Mexican nationals. Federal authorities are treating the El Paso attack as an act of domestic terrorism. The suspected gunman has been identified as a 21-year-old white man named Patrick Crusius, who lived 600 miles away in a suburb of Dallas. Shortly before the attack in El Paso, the gunman posted an anti-immigrant manifesto on the far-right message board 8chan. Some of the language in the manifesto echoed remarks by President Trump, including his use of the word “invasion” to describe immigrants crossing the southern border. We speak with César Blanco, Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives, and Fernando Garcia, founding director of the Border Network for Human Rights in El Paso."]

Boekhout, Kelly Van, Katherine Epps and Elisha Huntoon. "Top Censored News Stories of 2017 - 2018: #12 ICE Intends to Destroy Records of Inhumane Treatment of Immigrants." Project Censored (October 2, 2018)

Bond, Sarah E. "The Origins of White Supremacists’ Fear of Replacement." Hyperallergic (August 22, 2019)  ["Stoddard’s fear of non-white population growth was coupled with his recommendation of immigration restriction in the US. That recommendation was born out in the Johnson-Reed Act of 1924. It seems clear to me that today’s white supremacists not only advance the same fears of non-white population growth but have also found similar success in influencing nativist policy, as evidenced by Trump’s proposed Muslim ban and the caging of children at our southern border. Third, Stoddard proposed a separation of races at a national level i.e. white nations for white people. That argument is still advanced, even by Penn law professors!"]

Bosque, Melissa del. "Checkpoint Nation." Harper's (October 2018) ["Border agents are expanding their reach into the country's interior."]

Buchanan, Pat, et al. "The Beginning of Now." This American Life #615 (April 28, 2017) ["Before Donald Trump started his presidential campaign in 2015, there was a congressional race that redefined what was possible in American politics. Steve Bannon and Breitbart News got involved in that race early, just like they later got deeply involved in Donald Trump's race. On this week’s show: What happened in that campaign, what it made it work, and how we got to now."]

Call, Tristan and Nicole Ramos. "As Caravan of Migrants Begins Entry at U.S.-Mexico Border, Trump Admin Attacks Legal Asylum Process." Democracy Now (May 3, 2018) ["A standoff continues on the U.S.-Mexico border, where scores of asylum seekers are attempting to cross into the United States after taking part in a month-long caravan that began more than 2,000 miles away in the southern Mexican state of Chiapas. Many of the caravan participants are migrants fleeing violence in Honduras, Guatemala and El Salvador. Around 100 have been accepted for processing, but scores remain camped out by the border near San Diego, California, as officials claim the border entry point has limited capacity. President Trump and Attorney General Jeff Sessions have attacked the migrants in statements and tweets. “It’s very clear that President Trump and Attorney General Sessions do not understand this section of federal law,” says attorney Nicole Ramos, director of the Border Rights Project of Al Otro Lado, who represents members of the caravan. “The caravan members that are camped out at the border are trying to access a legal process which has existed for decades.” We speak with Ramos, who is in Tijuana, Mexico, and with Tristan Call, a volunteer with Pueblo Sin Fronteras, or People Without Borders, just back from spending time with the caravan."]
Chan, John. "Protests highlight the plight of migrant workers in China." World Socialist Web Site (June 17, 2011)

Chen, Adelaide. "Neither Here Nor There: Bhutanese Refugees in the U.S." Making Contact (June 17, 2009)

Chomsky, Aviva, et al. "#DontLookAway from US Concentration Camps for Asylum Seekers." Best of the Left #1288 (July 10, 2019) ["Today we take a look at the history, legality, conditions and consequences of US concentrations camps erected to house asylum seekers fleeing from unspeakable violence only to land in the hands of Trump's intentionally torturous immigration detention system."]

Clausing, Kim. "5 Questions: Kim Clausing on Open: The Progressive Case for Free Trade, Immigration, and Global Capital." Harvard University Press Blog (March 27. 2019)

Corich-Klem, Paige and Ryan Devereaux. "Arizona Activists Face Jail Time for Providing Life-Saving Aid to Migrants Crossing Sonoran Desert." Democracy Now (January 15, 2019) ["As the longest government shutdown in U.S. history heads into its 25th day and President Trump continues to crack down on immigrants, we look at how the Trump administration is criminalizing humanitarian aid at the border. In Tucson, Arizona, activists with the humanitarian group No More Deaths go to trial today facing charges for a slew of federal crimes, all due to their efforts to leave water and food in the harsh Sonoran Desert to help refugees and migrants survive the deadly journey across the U.S. border. The charges were filed last year in January, just a week after No More Deaths published a report accusing U.S. Border Patrol agents of routinely vandalizing or confiscating water, food and other humanitarian aid, condemning refugees and migrants to die of exposure or dehydration. We speak with Paige Corich-Kleim, a humanitarian aid worker and volunteer with No More Deaths, and Ryan Devereaux, a staff reporter at The Intercept. His latest piece is titled “Arizona Judge in No More Deaths Case Had Secret Talks with Federal Prosecutors.”"]

Crimmins, Timothy. "Stretching the Veil." The Point #18 (Winter 2019) ["On environmentalist/conservationist embrace of anti-immigration policies and their later rejection of these policies (if not acceptance of open borders theories)."]

Crockford, Kade. "Real Sanctuary Means Ending Mass Policing." The Dig (March 25, 2018) ["Perhaps nothing has more defined the monstrosity of Donald Trump than his racist demonization and targeting of immigrants from Mexico, Muslim-majority countries, and those nations he deems "shitholes." But what's seldom reported is that one of the key mechanisms the administration has used to target immigrants was rolled out under Barack Obama. It's called Secure Communities, and it's the culmination of decades of policy-making and politicking that have intertwined the US systems of mass incarceration and immigrant enforcement — facilitating the growth of both. To fight both mass deportation and mass incarceration, localities and states must move beyond what's currently defined as sanctuary..."]

Danticat, Edwidge. "'Completely Racist': Edwidge Danticat on Trump’s 'Shithole Countries' Remark Targeting Africa, Haiti." Democracy Now (January 12, 2018) ["International condemnation of Donald Trump is growing after reports the president used an expletive during a meeting about immigrants from Africa, Haiti and El Salvador. While meeting with lawmakers, Trump reportedly said, “Why do we want all these people from Africa here? They’re shithole countries … We should have more people from Norway.” Trump also reportedly said, “Why do we need more Haitians? Take them out.” Earlier this morning, Trump wrote on Twitter, “The language used by me at the DACA meeting was tough, but this was not the language used. What was really tough was the outlandish proposal made–a big setback for DACA!” Trump’s remarks come weeks after The New York Times reported Trump had also disparaged Haitians and Nigerians during a closed-door meeting in June. Trump said Nigerians would never “go back to their huts” if they came to visit the U.S. As for Haitians, Trump said they “all have AIDS.” Trump’s latest remarks come just after his administration announced it is ending temporary protected status for up to 250,000 Salvadorans who have been living in the U.S. since at least 2001. Last year, the Trump administration announced it is also ending temporary protected status for tens of thousands of Haitian, Nicaraguan and Sudanese immigrants living in the United States. Trump’s remarks from Thursday have been condemned across the globe. We speak to Haitian-American novelist Edwidge Danticat as Haitians mark the eighth anniversary of the devastating 2010 earthquake."]

Datta, Deblina, et al. "Guard Us All? Immigrant Women and the HPV Vaccine." Making Contact (July 29, 2009)

Dorfman, Ariel and Thanh Nguyen. "The Displaced: Refugee Writers Ariel Dorfman & Viet Thanh Nguyen on Migration, US Wars & Resistance." Democracy Now (May 4, 2018) ["As dozens of migrants from Central America remain camped out at the U.S.-Mexico border attempting to seek asylum in the United States, we spend the hour with two of the nation’s most celebrated writers, both refugees themselves. Viet Thanh Nguyen was born in Vietnam in 1971. After the fall of Saigon in 1975, he and his family fled to the United States. He is the author of three books, including “The Sympathizer,” which won the Pulitzer Prize, and he teaches at the University of Southern California. He is also the editor of a new collection titled “The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives.” We are also joined by the Chilean-American writer Ariel Dorfman, who has been described as one of the greatest Latin American novelists. Forty-five years ago, he fled Chile after a U.S.-backed coup displaced President Salvador Allende. Dorfman had served as Allende’s cultural adviser from 1970 to 1973. Living in exile, he became one of Gen. Augusto Pinochet’s most vocal critics, as well as a celebrated playwright and novelist. Dorfman, who teaches at Duke University, has just published a new novel, “Darwin’s Ghosts,” and a new collection of essays titled “Homeland Security Ate My Speech.” He also contributed an essay to “The Displaced: Refugee Writers on Refugee Lives.”]

---. "On the Vietnam War, How Hollywood Reframes U.S. Imperialism & More." Democracy Now (May 4, 2018)

Dunbar-Ortiz, Roxanne. "In Conversation with Nick Estes." Lannan Lectures (October 11, 2017) ["Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz is known for her lifelong commitment to national and international social justice issues. She has been active in the international Indigenous movement for more than four decades, working with Indigenous communities on sovereignty and land rights and helping to build the international Indigenous movement. She is Professor Emerita of Ethnic Studies at California State University, East Bay. She is the author of numerous books and articles on indigenous peoples’ right to self-determination, including Roots of Resistance: A History of Land Tenure in New Mexico, The Great Sioux Nation, and An Indigenous Peoples’ History of the United States, which received the 2015 American Book Award. A new book, Loaded: A Disarming History of the Second Amendment is forthcoming in January."]

"The Economics of Immigration and Demonization." Best of the Left #1162 (February 2, 2018)

Fang, Lee. "Koch Data Mining Company Helped Inundate Voters with Anti-Immigrant Messages." The Intercept (September 9, 2019)

Frey, John Carlos. "Deported Parents Say Trump Administration Is Still Separating Families at Border." Democracy Now (August 15, 2018) ["Nearly three weeks after the court-imposed deadline for reuniting families forcibly separated at the U.S.-Mexico border, the Trump administration has admitted that 559 children remain in government custody. More than 360 of these children are separated from parents who have been deported by the U.S. government. Most of the families separated at the border were seeking asylum from violence in their home countries of El Salvador, Honduras and Guatemala. Instead, the parents were charged in federal court with a crime for illegally crossing the border, then held in jail and detention. The children, some still breastfeeding, were sent to shelters around the country. Judge Dana Sabraw, who ruled the Trump administration must reunite all separated families, said, “For every parent who is not located, there will be a permanent orphaned child, and that is 100 percent the responsibility of the administration.” For more, we speak with John Carlos Frey, award-winning investigative reporter with The Marshall Project and special correspondent with ”PBS NewsHour.” He is recently back from reporting trips in Guatemala and Nogales, Mexico, where he spoke with asylum seekers waiting for days and even weeks to enter the United States." Part two: "Military Cover-Up? 100s of Migrants Feared Dead in Mass Grave at AZ’s Barry Goldwater Bombing Range."]

---. "Why the Real Migration Crisis Is in Central America, Not at the Southern U.S. Border." Democracy Now (April 1, 2019) ["President Trump has announced the United States will cut off funding to the so-called Northern Triangle countries of Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador that are the primary source of a wave of migrants seeking asylum at the U.S.-Mexico border, including caravans of families with children. He is also threatening to close the border with Mexico. This comes after Trump declared a national emergency to justify redirecting money earmarked for the military to pay for building a wall at the border. We speak with John Carlos Frey, award-winning investigative reporter and PBS News Hour special correspondent who has reported extensively on immigration and recently traveled with the first migrant caravan from Central America to the U.S.-Mexico border."]


Gallagher, Katherine, John Kiriakou and Sejal Zota. "Gina Haspel, Rule of Law and Torture; The National Immigration Project And Protecting Haitian Refugees." Law and Disorder Radio (March 26, 2018) ["Gina Haspel, Rule of Law And Torture: Nazi generals and Nazi leaders were prosecuted at the end of World War II for war crimes and crimes against humanity and genocide. These crimes were incorporated into international law. The chief prosecutor was Robert Jackson, a Supreme Court judge. The Nazis defended themselves by arguing that they were just following orders. This defense was deemed unavailing. In many cases, they were found guilty and sentenced to lengthy prison terms or hung. He said that the war crimes tribunal at Nirenberg was not merely victors’ justice. But that the principles it followed would be universal and applied in the future, to all countries including the USA. And indeed, the United States signed on to the Geneva Conventions and Convention Against Torture and incorporate both the crimes and the concept of universal jurisdiction into its law. Gina Haspel has been nominated by President Donald Trump to head the CIA. She is a war criminal. She violated both international and national law by running a black site secret detention center in Thailand where men were tortured. Although there were several court orders that the evidence be preserved, Gina Haspel had the videotapes of torture destroyed. John Brennan, Obama’s ex head of the CIA, who was involved in the torture program, recently came to her defense, stating that she was just following orders: The Nazi defense. Trump supports torture. He believes that torture works. This is both immoral and untrue. He says he is for waterboarding and worse. He now has a subordinate with whom he is in agreement. Obama refused to prosecute the lawbreakers. Instead he threw CIA whistleblower John Kiriakou in prison for two years for disclosing American torture. He said we must look forward, not backward. This greenlighted what is going on now with Haspel. Michael Ratner warned us about this eventuality. The European Center for Human and Constitutional Rights may seek Haspel’s arrest if she goes to Germany. Such is the irony of history that the German fascist government that perpetrated the greatest crimes against humanity has been superseded by an American government which condones and is perpetuating them as well. The National Immigration Project And Protecting Haitian Refugees: The National Immigration Project of the National Lawyers Guild filed a lawsuit in Brooklyn on March 15 to block President Trump’s cancellation of temporary protected status which had been granted to more than 50,000 Haitian refugees because of the terrible conditions in that country since the hurricane in 2010. The National Immigration Project declared President Trump’s actions to be unlawful, racially motivated, and evidence of a complete lack of knowledge of immigration law. The TPS program exempts from deportation people from countries in turmoil due to war, natural disasters, and other extraordinary conditions. The suit alleges that the federal government was arbitrary and capricious in his decision to end the program and was motivated by Donald Trump’s “racial and national origin animus towards patients.” The suit cites Trump’s demeaning remarks towards Haitians and Haiti. He has said that Haitians have AIDS and Haiti is a “s&*t hole” country. The Trump administration‘s position is that protecting Haitians is no longer necessary because conditions in Haiti have improved."]


Gerlent, Lee. "Trump Admin Hints It May Resume Family Separation at Border; ACLU Says 'Public Outcry Is Critical.'" Democracy Now (October 15, 2018) ["The Trump administration is reportedly considering plans to resume its policy of forcibly separating migrant children from their families along the U.S.-Mexico border, even as the full number of people torn apart the last time it carried out the widely condemned practice remains unclear. A new report by Amnesty International suggests immigration officials separated some 6,000 families between April and August, a far higher number of children and parents torn apart than previously thought. Trump administration officials are now considering plans to detain asylum-seeking families together for up to 20 days and then force parents to choose either to stay detained together for months or years while their immigration case proceeds or to allow their children to be taken to a government shelter where their relatives or others can seek custody. We speak with Lee Gelernt, deputy director of the ACLU Immigrants’ Rights Project. He is the lead lawyer on the ACLU’s national challenge to the Trump administration’s family separation practice."]

Gogol Bordello. "Immiganiada (We Comin Rougher)." (Official Video for the song: 2010)

Gooding-Williams, Robert. "Membership, Citizenship and Democracy." Public Books (September 24, 2019)

Hypernormalisation (BBC: Adam Curtis, 2016: 166 mins)  ["HyperNormalisation wades through the culmination of forces that have driven this culture into mass uncertainty, confusion, spectacle and simulation. Where events keep happening that seem crazy, inexplicable and out of control—from Donald Trump to Brexit, to the War in Syria, mass immigration, extreme disparity in wealth, and increasing bomb attacks in the West—this film shows a basis to not only why these chaotic events are happening, but also why we, as well as those in power, may not understand them. We have retreated into a simplified, and often completely fake version of the world. And because it is reflected all around us, ubiquitous, we accept it as normal. This epic narrative of how we got here spans over 40 years, with an extraordinary cast of characters—the Assad dynasty, Donald Trump, Henry Kissinger, Patti Smith, early performance artists in New York, President Putin, Japanese gangsters, suicide bombers, Colonel Gaddafi and the Internet. HyperNormalisation weaves these historical narratives back together to show how today’s fake and hollow world was created and is sustained. This shows that a new kind of resistance must be imagined and actioned, as well as an unprecedented reawakening in a time where it matters like never before."]

Kersgaard, Scot. "Alabama gives birth to a new civil rights movement." The Colorado Independent (November 16, 2011)

Lind, Dara. "The Trump administration’s separation of families at the border, explained." Vox (June 15, 2018)

Loewinger, Micah, et al. "Swedish Cowboys & Syrian Refugees." On the Media (November 10, 2017) ["In the middle of nowhere southern Sweden, there’s a popular Wild West theme park called High Chaparral, where Scandinavian tourists relive the action of the old American cowboy films. For over a year, the park served another function: a refugee camp for some 500 of the 163,000 migrants – many from Syria – who applied for asylum in Sweden in 2015. That Syrians would find refuge here actually jibes with High Chaparral’s interpretation of the Old West, which emphasizes the new life that the frontier offered to beleaguered pioneers, and the community that was required to survive there. Americans tend to ignore this history, instead lionizing the gritty traits of the cowboy, the cultural basis for our obsession with rugged individualism. OTM producer Micah Loewinger traveled to High Chaparral last summer, where he met Abood Alghzzawi, a Syrian asylum-seeker, who embarked on an incredible journey to the Wild West of Sweden. This piece explores how politicians seized the cowboy image to further their agendas, and how questioning the narrative of the Old West might influence immigration policy."]

Long, Clara. "Trump Admin Moves 100 Migrant Kids Back to 'Child Jail' Despite Concern over Inhumane Conditions." Democracy Now (June 26, 2019) ["The Department of Homeland Security has moved 100 migrant children back to a Border Patrol facility in Clint, Texas, where infants and toddlers have been locked up without adequate food, water, sanitation or medical care, with older children having to care for the younger ones. Around 300 kids were removed from the facility Monday following widespread outrage over the reports, but Customs and Border Protection said some of the children are being sent back, claiming that the facility is no longer overcrowded. Lawyers who recently visited the facility described a scene of chaos and sickness, with children unable to shower or change into clean clothes for weeks on end. We speak with Clara Long, senior researcher at Human Rights Watch. She was part of the monitoring team that visited Border Patrol facilities last week, including Clint."]

Mace, Ryan. "'A Matter of Life and Death': : Trump Admin Slashes Refugee Cap to Historic Low, Imperiling Thousands." Democracy Now (September 19, 2018) ["The Trump administration has once again slashed the number of refugees allowed to resettle in the United States. On Monday, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo announced the new cap on refugees would be a historic low of just 30,000 next year, down from the current level of 45,000. The actual number of refugees allowed in to the country is expected to be even lower than the 30,000 cap. Monday’s announcement represents the lowest ceiling any president has imposed on the U.S. refugee program since its creation in 1980. Under President Obama, the refugee cap reached 110,000. For more on the Trump administration’s refugee policy, we speak with Ryan Mace, refugee specialist for Amnesty International USA."]

Massey, Douglas S. "The Mexico-U.S. Border in the American Imagination." Proceeding of the American Philosophical Society 160.2 (June 2016): 160-177.

Mazur, Laurie, et al. "Population Control or Population Justice?" Making Contact (June 19, 2012)

Mealer, Bryan. "This is what Trump’s caravan 'invasion' really looks like." The Guardian (November 26, 2018) ["Those walking to the US to seek asylum have been demonized by Trump, who sent more than 5,000 soldiers to await them at the border. Bryan Mealer traveled with the most vulnerable among them"]

Merkley, Jeff. "Sen. Merkley Condemns Trump’s War Against Migrant Families as U.S. Moves to Indefinitely Jail Kids." Democracy Now (August 23, 2019) ["The Trump administration is moving to indefinitely detain migrant children and their families, reversing decades of U.S. policy. The Department of Homeland Security and the Department of Health and Human Services is expected to issue a new rule today to withdraw from a 1997 federal court settlement known as the Flores agreement, which put a 20-day limit on migrant family detentions. We speak with Democratic Senator Jeff Merkley, who made headlines last year when he was barred from entering an old Walmart where the government was detaining about 1,500 immigrant children in Brownsville, Texas."]

Mountz, Alison. Seeking Asylum: Human Smuggling and Bureaucracy at the Border. Minneapolis: University of Minnesota Press, 2010. [Available in BCTC Library JV 6201.M68 2010]

Msimang, Sisonke. "Eyes on the back of our head: Recovering a multicultural South Africa." Ideas (July 27, 2018) ["Journalist and activist Sisonke Msimang speaks at a former prison complex in Johannesburg which once held Mahatma Gandhi and Nelson Mandela. The setting is apt: Sisonke believes that post-apartheid South Africa has become imprisoned by its own past — a past which whites cannot recall and which blacks cannot forget. With both a mischievous sense of humour and sharp historical analyses, she pulls down the old binarism of black versus white to make way for a truly multicultural South Africa, one that welcomes other African migrants as it embraces its own racially diverse past. As she says:"We are learning to scan the wreckage of our history and mine it for gold. To look for the connections between us, even as we walk with our eyes firmly fixed on the horizon. We are moving ever more sure-footed, towards making a South Africa in which we all belong.""]

Offenheiser, Raymond. "With Focus on U.S.-Led Strikes, Global Failure to Meet Syria’s Humanitarian Crisis Goes Unnoticed." Democracy Now (September 4, 2013)

Pérez, Ana Cecilia. "Refusing to Hide: Migrants Find Power in Caravans." Yes! (November 26, 2018) ["Every step is a collective action to expose the failures of governments throughout the region. Their courageous, albeit dangerous, journey exposes the impact of U.S imperialism in countries where our government is directly implicated in multiple coups. They elucidate for us the trade policies that are grounded in economies of extraction, at the expense of local economies—all for the benefit of U.S. corporations. Images of parents carrying toddlers on their shoulders as they cross rivers and of mothers lying on sidewalks comforting their children are in sharp contrast with the narratives the 45th president of the United States conjures up as he continues to sow hate, division, and lies. Make no mistake: What is at stake here is our country’s values and our very own humanity as citizens and residents of the United States. Will we turn our backs on dispossessed families, or will we fight to uphold the aspirational principles on which this country was founded? The time has come to see Latin American nations not as “shithole countries,” but as real partners in the geopolitical arena. This means creating trade and foreign-relations policies that support alternative and sustainable economic development, local industries, and the creation of jobs with a living wage. Policies focused on people, the planet, and the well-being of all people. We all deserve that."]

Potok, Mark. "The Year in Hate and Extremism, 2010." Southern Poverty Law Center (Spring 2011)

Simonson, Peter. "Right-Wing Vigilantes Hold Migrants Hostage on U.S. Border. Did Border Patrol Give Tacit Approval?" Democracy Now (April 23, 2019) ["The FBI has arrested the head of an armed vigilante group that has repeatedly filmed itself detaining migrant border crossers at gunpoint. Sixty-nine-year-old Larry Mitchell Hopkins is the leader of the far-right, pro-Trump group calling itself United Constitutional Patriots, which the American Civil Liberties Union described as an “armed fascist militia organization.” His arrest came just days after the ACLU accused the vigilantes of illegally detaining 300 migrants, including young children, near Sunland Park, New Mexico, last week. We speak to Peter Simonson, executive director of the ACLU of New Mexico."]

Stillman, Sarah. "When Deportation is a Death Sentence: The Fatal Consequences of U.S. Immigration Policy." Democracy Now (February 6, 2018) ["As the battle over the DREAMers and DACA heats up in Washington, we look at a stunning new piece in The New Yorker titled “When Deportation is a Death Sentence.” It looks at how an unknown number of men and women have been killed in their home countries after being deported or turned away by the United States. The article focuses in part on a Mexican-born woman named Laura. Despite living her whole adult life in Texas, she was deported to Mexico after a traffic stop. She warned a U.S. Border Patrol agent, “When I am found dead, it will be on your conscience.” Within a week of her deportation, she was murdered by her ex-husband. We are joined by the award-winning journalist and New Yorker staff writer Sarah Stillman. She is also director of the Global Migration Project at Columbia University’s Graduate School of Journalism."]

Thompson, A.C. "Border Agents Caught Posting Racist, Sexist Messages About Migrants & AOC in Secret Facebook Group." Democracy Now (July 3, 2019) ["Customs and Border Protection has opened an investigation into the posting of racist and xenophobic messages by current and former Border Patrol agents on a private Facebook group. More than 9,500 people are part of the group, which was exposed by ProPublica on Monday. The Facebook group is filled with racist, homophobic, anti-immigrant and misogynistic content about migrants and asylum seekers, as well as public officials like Congressmember Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, who is depicted in a photoshopped image being sexually assaulted by President Trump. In another thread, members of the group made fun of a video of a man trying to carry a child through a rapid river in a plastic bag. Someone commented, “At least it’s already in a trash bag.” We speak with ProPublica reporter A.C. Thompson, who broke the story."]

Vargas, Jose Antonio. "'Illegal' vs 'Undocumented.'" On the Media (September 28, 2012)

The War on Immigrants Intercept (Ongoing Archive)

"Wells Fargo Profits from Private Prisons." Media Roots (November 22, 2011)

Wilkerson, Isabel. "Isabel Wilkerson’s Leaderless March that Remade America." Open Source (October 12, 2010)

Black Panther (USA: Ryan Coogler, 2018)






Black Panther (USA: Ryan Coogler, 2018: 134 mins)


Bhimull, Chandra D. "In Black Panther and Wakanda Extraordinary Possibilities are Realized." From the Square (March 13, 2018)

Bierut, Michael and Jessica Helfand. "Taking License." The Observatory #76 (March 2018) ["A proposal to license designers, Black Panther, Legally Black movie posters, NASA’s Pluto site."]

Connolly, Nathan. "Looking for Wakanda." On the Media (February 26, 2019) ["A persistent site for utopian longing, Wakanda has once more captured the public imagination: endowed with unlimited access to the most precious natural resource in the world, unsullied by the ravages of colonialism, Wakanda has reignited conversations about what black liberation can and should look like. According to Johns Hopkins University history professor Nathan Connolly, this latest chapter is part of a much longer tradition of imagining and reimagining black utopias. Connolly speaks with Brooke about how Wakanda arises from a 500-year history — from Maroon communities to Haiti to the actual Black Panther movement — a journey that takes us from "dreams to art to life, and back again."]

Gates, Racquel and Kristen J.Warner. "Wakanda Forever: The Pleasures, The Politics, and The Problems." Film Quarterly (March 9, 2018)

Girish, Devika. "Out of This World." Film Comment (March/April 2018) ["Ryan Coogler’s Black Panther envisions an alternate future for a troubled genre and a troubling reality, pointing the way toward more political, playful science fiction"]

Hudson, David. "Ryan Coogler's Black Panther." Current (February 6, 2018)


Lebron, Christopher, Robyn C. Spencer and Carvell Wallace. "Afrofuturism, Liberation & Representation in Black Panther: A Roundtable Discussion." Democracy Now (February 28, 2018) ["While “Black Panther” has broken box office records, it has also generated an intense debate. We host a roundtable with three guests: Christopher Lebron, a professor at Johns Hopkins University who recently wrote “Black Panther Is Not the Film We Deserve”; Robyn C. Spencer, a professor at Lehman College, who wrote “Black Feminist Meditations on the Women of Wakanda”; and Carvell Wallace, author of The New York Times Magazine story “Why Black Panther Is a Defining Moment for Black America.”"]

Philo, Kaila. "Fear of a Black Universe: Can Marvel's Black Panther help carry the torch of Black radicalism?" The Baffler (February 21, 2018)

Spencer, Robyn C. and Carvell Wallace. "How the Black Panther Movie is a Defining Moment for Black America." Democracy Now (February 28, 2018) ["As Black History Month wraps up, we look at the record-breaking movie “Black Panther.” Since the release of “Black Panther” earlier this month, fans have crowdfunded campaigns to ensure children can see the film in theaters, teachers have incorporated the movie’s core themes of anti-colonialism and cultural representation into their curriculum, and activists have used film screenings to hold mass voter registration drives. The movie has also renewed calls for the release of more than a dozen imprisoned members of the real Black Panther Party. “Black Panther” has also ignited a firestorm of impassioned social commentary online among fans and detractors alike. We speak to historian Robyn C. Spencer, who wrote a piece, “Black Feminist Meditations on the Women of Wakanda,” and Carvell Wallace, whose piece, “Why Black Panther Is a Defining Moment for Black America,” appeared in The New York Times Magazine."]

Sperling, Nicole. "Black Panther Cinematographer Rachel Morrison Shoots and Scores." Vanity Fair (February 16, 2018) ["The first woman nominated for a cinematography Oscar takes on Mudbound, Black Panther, and the Hollywood establishment."]

Tompkins, Joseph. "Woke Hollywood? The Marketing of Black Panther." Counterpunch (March 30, 2018)










Monday, August 27, 2018

Arrival (USA: Denis Villeneuve, 2016)






Arrival (USA: Denis Villeneuve, 2016: 116 mins)


Adams, Amy, et al. "Watch Isabelle Huppert, Emma Stone, Amy Adams & More Discuss Acting in 50-Minute Roundtable."  Film Stage (January 30, 2017) [" Isabelle Huppert (Elle), Emma Stone (La La Land), Amy Adams (Arrival), Natalie Portman (Jackie), Naomie Harris (Moonlight), Annette Bening (20th Century Women), and Taraji P. Henson (Hidden Figures)."]

Art of the Title. "Know Your 2017 Below-the-Line Oscar Nominees." The Film Stage (January 30, 2017) ["The major below-the-line categories are Cinematography, Production Design, Sound Editing/Mixing, Visual Effects, Costume Design, and Makeup and Hairstyling . On the best productions (including those that the Academy labels Best Picture), the work of these crucial visual elements often blend together so seamlessly that it's hard to pick their creators' work.Thankfully, Art of The Film has created a series of supercuts called Oscars in One Minute that isolate the work of these artists so we can fully recognize their importance and beauty within each respective production."]

Buckley, Cara. "Denis Villeneuve of Arrival Leans Into Strong Heroines." The New York Times (November 13, 2016)

Cassidy, Brendan, J.D. Duran and Richard Newby. "Arrival, Top 3 "Thinking" Sci-Fi Movies, The Deathly Hallows Part 2 ." InSession Film (November 15, 2016)

Chiang, Ted. "Story of Your Life." (Original novella published in 1998 in Starlight 2 that the film is adapted from)

Desowitz, Bill. " How Composer Jóhann Jóhannsson Found a New Musical Language for Denis Villeneuve’s Arrival." IndieWire (November 21, 2016)

Eggert, Brian. "Arrival (2016)." Deep Focus Review (November 11, 2016)


"In Arrival, Denis Villeneuve Delivers a New Hard Science Fiction Touchstone." Plot and Theme (November 11, 2016)

Kermode, Mark. "Arrival: A Poetic Vision of Contact With Aliens." The Guardian (November 13, 2016)

Koski, Genevieve, et al. "Contact / Arrival. Pt. 1." The Next Picture Show (November 29, 2016) ["This week, we look to the skies to consider two films about the difficulty of communication between worlds, and the inward journeys involved in looking to the stars. Inspired by Denis Villeneuve’s new ARRIVAL, we begin with an in-depth discussion of an earlier film with which it shares many thematic and narrative elements: Robert Zemeckis' 1997 Carl Sagan adaptation CONTACT. We consider the film’s ambition, dissect its blockbuster qualities, and try to determine what makes this unwieldy, emotional movie work so well, almost despite itself. (Spoiler: It’s mostly Jodie Foster.)"]

---. "Contact / Arrival, Pt. 2." The Next Picture Show (December 1, 2016) ["Our conversation about movies about talking to aliens moves to the present with Denis Villeneuve’s new ARRIVAL, which hits many of the same narrative points as CONTACT, but points them in a different emotional direction. We talk about our reactions to the newer film, and how its ideas about science, communication, and emotion compare with CONTACT’s."]

Lane, Anthony. "The Consuming Fervor of Arrival." The New Yorker (November 14, 2016)

Maheshwari, Laya. "The Geopolitics of Arrival." Keyframe (January 30, 2017)

Mayer, Sophie. "Girl Power: Back to the Future of Feminist Science Fiction with Into the Forest and Arrival." Film Quarterly 70.3 (Spring 2017): 32-42.

Muller, and Nate Zoebl. "Arrival (2016)." Psycho Drive-In (November 13, 2016)

Roark, David. "Alien and Time: The Philosophy of Arrival." Balder & Dash (December 8, 2016)

Statt, Nick. "How the short story that inspired Arrival helps us interpret the film’s major twist." The Verge (November 16, 2016)

Wilkinson, Alissa. "Arrival is a stunning science fiction movie with deep implications for today."u Vox (November 24, 2016)





Denis Villeneuve Through Glass || Video Essay from Mikolaj Kacprzak on Vimeo.









Video Essay #6 - Words and Love in Arrival from Lukas Grevis on Vimeo.









The silhouettes of Arrival from joserb93 on Vimeo.




































Friday, August 24, 2018

The Shape of Water (USA: Guillermo Del Toro, 2017)





The Shape of Water (USA: Guillermo Del Toro, 2017: 123 mins)

If I spoke about it – if I did – what would I tell you? I wonder. Would I tell you about the time … Or would I tell you about the place … Would I tell you about her? The princess without voice. Or perhaps I would just warn you, about the truth of these facts. And the tale of love and loss. And the monster, who tried to destroy it all. - Giles, The Shape of Water (2017)

Anderson, Jake. "The Shape of Water." Letterboxd (August 29, 2018)

Digravio, Will.  "How Guillermo del Toro Uses Color to Create New Worlds." Film School Rejects (February 16, 2018)

Duran, J.D. "The Shape of Water is a Weird, but Beautiful Love Story." InSession Film (December 1, 2017)

Gerwig, Greta, et al. "63 Minute Directors Roundtable Talk." The Hollywood Reporter (Posted on Playlist: January 22, 2018) ["Angelina Jolie (“First They Killed My Father”), Patty Jenkins (“Wonder Woman”), Greta Gerwig (“Lady Bird”), Joe Wright (“Darkest Hour”), Guillermo del Toro (“The Shape of Water”), and Denis Villeneuve (“Blade Runner 2049”)."]

"Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water) Talks with William Friedkin (The Devil and Father Amorth), Part 1." Talkhouse (April 17, 2018) ["In the first part of their enthralling two-part conversation for the Talkhouse Podcast, the pair discuss winning big at the Oscars, surviving award season, how to stay a scrapper despite success, del Toro’s apprenticeship under makeup legend Dick Smith, the remarkable story of Friedkin and the Pazuzu statue in The Exorcist, the plagiarism controversy surrounding The Shape of Water, and much more."]

"Guillermo del Toro (The Shape of Water) Talks with William Friedkin (The Devil and Father Amorth), Part 2." Talkhouse (April 19, 2018) ["Here, the longtime friends discuss the genesis of and remarkable stories surrounding Friedkin’s compelling new documentary about the Vatican’s exorcist,The Devil and Father Amorth. In the process, they tackle some of the most substantial topics imaginable, including: Christ, Hitler, religion, evil, reason vs. emotion, empathy vs. fear, free will, the impending apocalypse — and how filmmakers can make a difference in a world on the brink."]

Lane, Anthony. "The Genre-Fluid Fantasy of The Shape of Water."  The New Yorker (December 11, 2017)

Liu, Rebecca. "Of River Gods and Women: Guillermo Del Toro's The Shape of Water." Another Gaze (February 23, 2018)
O'Falt, Chris. "The Best Cast Films of 2017, According to Top Casting Directors." IndieWire (December 4, 2017) ["15 casting directors explain the brilliance behind their peers’ work in “Lady Bird,” “Get Out,” “The Post,” "The Shape of Water," and more."]

Renée, V. "How Guillermo Del Toro's Classic Cinema Homages Add Depth to The Shape of Water." No Film School (February 27, 2018)

Scott, A.O. "The Shape of Water is Altogether Wonderful." The New York Times (November 30, 2017)

Sturm, Rudiger. "Guillermo Del Toro: 'I'm Not Meta, I'm Really Earnest." The Talks (March 7, 2018)

Swinney, Jacob T. "The Final Shot: Fading to White." Fandor (November 30, 2018)

Thrift, Matt. "The Shape of Water." Little White Lies (February 14, 2018)

Wilkinson, Alissa. "The Shape of Water, from Guillermo del Toro, is a beautiful adult fairy tale about a fish-man." Vox (March 5, 2018)

Wood, Michael. "At the Movies: The Shape of Water." London Review of Books (March 22, 2018)











































Dialogic Cinephilia - August 24, 2018


100 Days of Gratitude: Day 1

Inspired by local healers/artists, working with Peace Studies students (I'm going to suggest today that they do this), and one person close to me that has challenged me to reflect and grow, I am going to practice a 100 days of conscious gratitude to develop a stronger sense of what I find meaningful in the world and to realize how fortunate I am.

Day 1: Books
I cannot overstate the importance of books in my life. From the earliest age they opened up a vast world of wonders for a shy, awkward, sensitive kid. They have been with me when I felt despair or loneliness. They have pushed me down roads less traveled and given me reasons to think differently and get out into the world to work for change. They also have provided a historical/future/transcultural dialogue that often plays out in my mind and my dreams as actual conversations with the authors (it should be noted I write in books and actively dialogue with them). I remember as a young working class kid laboring away at some difficult physical job I would daydream about what it would be like to have a job where I could read for a living. It seemed like an impossible dream at the time for a 10th grade dropout ... I often wonder with David Byrne "how did I get here" as a Humanities professor who is paid to read and talk about it. My reading has transformed in the 21st Century, but books still serve a central part of my continuing education and they continue to inspire me to explore more of the outside world/cultures/peoples.



Chris Hedges: Journalist/Presbyterian Minister/Former War Correspondent/African-American Studies/Christian Anarchist Dialogic Cinephilia (Ongoing Archive)

Griffin, Farah Jasmine and Mark Anthony Neal. "Respect: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin, an Icon of the Civil Rights & Feminist Movements." Democracy Now (August 17, 2018) ["Aretha Franklin, the Queen of Soul, died Thursday at her home in Detroit at the age of 76. For decades, Aretha Franklin has been celebrated as one of the greatest American singers of any genre, who helped give birth to soul and redefined the American musical tradition. In 1987, Aretha Franklin became the first woman to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. She held the record for the most songs on the Billboard Top 100 for 40 years. Rolling Stone ranked her the greatest singer of all time on its top 100 list, calling her “a gift from God.” Her hit single “Respect” became part of the soundtrack to the civil rights movement, which she also supported behind the scenes. We speak with professors Mark Anthony Neal of Duke University and Farah Jasmine Griffin of Columbia University." Part two: "Angela Davis: Aretha Franklin Offered to Post Bail for Me, Saying “Black People Will Be Free.”" and Part three: "Angela Davis: Aretha Franklin “Will Forever Animate Our Collective Sense of Desire for Change.”"]

Hedemann, Ed and Jeremy Scahill. "In Memoriam: David McReynolds, the Gay Socialist Pacifist Who Twice Ran for President, Dies at 88." Democracy Now (August 20, 2018) ["Longtime pacifist and socialist David McReynolds died Friday at the age of 88. Known to historian Howard Zinn and many others as a “hero of the antiwar movement,” McReynolds was a staff member with the War Resisters League from 1960 to 1999. There, he focused on counter-recruitment and helped organize one of the first draft card burnings. He went on to play a key role in some of major demonstrations against the Vietnam War and campaign for nuclear disarmament. McReynolds ran for president in 1980 and 2000 as an openly gay man. For more, we speak with two of his close friends. Ed Hedemann worked with McReynolds for decades at the War Resisters League. Jeremy Scahill is an investigative journalist and co-founder of The Intercept." Part two: "Friends Remember War Resisters League Activist & Socialist David McReynolds, Long Targeted by FBI."]

Onderchanin, Stephanie and Duncan Tarr. "How the National Prison Strike Is Working to Help Incarcerated People in the United States." Teen Vogue (August 21, 2018)

Pekron, Rebecca. "On Arthur Rimbaud." Entitled Opinions (June 8, 2016) ["I dreamed of Crusades, voyages of discovery that nobody had heard of, republics without histories, religious wars stamped out, revolutions in morals, movements of races and continents; I used to believe in every kind of magic. I began it as an investigation. I turned silences and nights into words. What was unutterable, I wrote down. I made the whirling world stand still."
"A thousand Dreams within me softly burn: From time to time my heart is like some oak Whose blood runs golden where a branch is torn." -- Arthur Rimbaud]

Riley, Boots. "On Sorry to Bother You and Communism." The Dig (August 9, 2018) ["Sorry to Bother You is a hilarious film about the dead serious shitiness of life under neoliberalism's flexibilized and precarious labor regime, a system teetering upon a thin line between free labor exploitation and a form of expropriation reminiscent of full-on slave labor—all at the mercy of the thinly-veiled barbarity of Palo Alto-style techno-utopianism. It's about how capitalist society divides and conquers friends and family to claim not only our obedience but also our very souls, and about how the task of left organizing is to see through that game and fight together. Dan's guest today is Boots Riley, who wrote and directed the film and also fronts the left-wing hip hop group The Coup."]

Wheeler, Marcy. "Michael Cohen Pleads Guilty & Implicates Trump as Paul Manafort Is Convicted. Is Impeachment Next?" Democracy Now (August 22, 2018) ["Talk of the possible impeachment of President Trump is growing in Washington after Tuesday’s stunning legal developments. In New York, Trump’s longtime personal lawyer and fixer, Michael Cohen, pleaded guilty to eight criminal charges, including tax evasion, bank fraud and campaign finance violations. Two hundred miles away, in Virginia, Trump’s former campaign manager Paul Manafort was found guilty of eight charges related to tax fraud and bank fraud. The Cohen case is likely to put the president in the most legal jeopardy. Cohen, who worked for Trump from 2006 until this year, admitted in court that he arranged to illegally pay out money to two women—an adult film star and a Playboy model—to keep them from speaking during the 2016 campaign about their affairs with Donald Trump. Cohen said the payments were made “in coordination with and at the direction of a candidate for federal office” and that they were made “for the principal purpose of influencing the election.” Cohen’s lawyer Lanny Davis wrote on Twitter, “If those payments were a crime for Michael Cohen, then why wouldn’t they be a crime for Donald Trump?” We speak with Marcy Wheeler, an independent journalist who covers national security and civil liberties."]




















100 days of gratitude - Day 2 Difference

I am grateful that my world and society is so diverse and I celebrate the many different beings and things that remind me of that wonder. I feel sorry for those that fear this difference, those that find it a threat. I would never want to live in a world where people all look like I do, think like I do or believe what I do. A founding statement that has always guided me is the Russian thinker/writer Mikhail Bakhtin when he states in the book: Problems of Dostoevsky’s Poetics. trans. C. Emerson. Minneapolis: U of Minnesota P, 1984:

Everything that pertains to me enters my consciousness, beginning with my name, from the external world through the mouths of others (my mother, and so forth), with their intonation, in their emotional and value-assigning tonality. I realize myself initially through others: from them I receive words, forms, and tonalities for the formation of my initial idea of myself. … Just as the body is formed initially in the mother’s womb, a person’s consciousness awakens wrapped in another’s consciousness. (xx)
Truth is not born nor is it found inside the head of an individual person; it is born between people collectively searching for the truth, in the process of their dialogic interaction. (110)
I am conscious of myself and become myself only while revealing myself for another, through another, and with the help of another. The most important acts constituting self-consciousness are determined by a relationship toward another consciousness (toward a thou) … The very being of man (both external and internal) is the deepest communion. To be means to communicate … To be means to be for another, and through the other for oneself. A person has no internal sovereign territory, he is wholly and always on the boundary: looking inside himself, he looks into the eyes of another or with the eyes of another … I cannot manage without another, I cannot become myself without another. (287)
Monologism at its extreme denies the existence outside itself of another consciousness with equal rights and equal responsibilities, another I with equal rights (thou). With a monologic approach…another person remains wholly and merely an object of consciousness, and not another consciousness. No response is expected from it that could change everything in the world of my consciousness. Monologue is finalized and deaf to the other's response, does not expect it and does not acknowledge in it any decisive force. Monologue manages without the other, and therefore to some degree materializes all reality. Monologue pretends to be the ultimate word. It closes down the represented world and represented persons. (Bakhtin: 292-93)
The dialogic nature of consciousness. The dialogic nature of human life itself. The single adequate form for verbally expressing authentic human life is the open- ended dialogue. Life by its very nature is dialogic. To live means to participate in dialogue: to ask questions, to heed, to respond, to agree, and so forth. In this dialogue a person participates wholly and throughout his whole life: with his eyes, lips, hands, soul, spirit, with his whole body and deeds. He invests his entire self in discourse, and this discourse enters into the dialogic fabric of human life, into the world symposium. (Bakhtin: 293)

I seek to engage in a conversation with (speaking with and thinking with) the differences I encounter daily. To not be mindlessly afraid of what is different from me. To appreciate/understand the uniqueness of everything/everyone. I do not seek difference for difference's sake (when the cultivation of difference becomes another form of rout conformity and silencing of difference - when alternative becomes just another consumer fashion or how subcultures police the interests/expression of their adherents), instead it is the expression of authentic identity that produces something special and allows for others to do the same.

Meditating in my backyard this morning I was gazing at the back of my fence where there is a collection of purple flowers and I noticed one in the middle of them growing from the same vine that was completely different, kind of an albino mutation that lacked the purple of the others, but had its own special beauty. I gazed upon it in wonder and thought on how did this special little flower come to be. An accident of nature or something else - who knows, it not only shined in uniqueness, it also brought into focus the beauty of all of the flowers. The contrast, the difference, enhances them all.