CINEMA OF RESISTANCE
Second Sunday Culture Films Monthly Series at the Penn Museum
Explores Resistance to Cultural Change
PHILADELPHIA, PA 2013—The Penn Museum's Second Sunday Culture Films monthly series, presenting documentary films from cultures around the world, returns for a new season October 2013 through February 2014. This year's series focuses on individual stories of resistance to cultural change, often in the face of imminent threats of violence. Each film is introduced by faculty from the University of Pennsylvania and other universities, with open discussion among experts and audience members following the screenings. All programs begin at 2:00 pm in the Museum's Rainey Auditorium. The series, co-sponsored by the
2013–2014 Penn Humanities Forum on Violence and the Philadelphia Film Society, is free with Museum admission.
In Cuba in 1961, some 250,000 volunteer teachers joined the Cuban Literacy Campaign, traveling to all corners of the country to teach families how to read and write. Most volunteers were under 18, and more than half were women. Using interviews, still photos, and archival film footage, this film explores the experiences of nine of those women, and how their lives were changed as a result. After the film, Dr. Rachel Ellis Neyra, Wesleyan University, leads a discussion on how "re-globalization" may affect Cuba. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society, Penn Cinema Studies, the Penn Humanities Forum, Penn Latin American and Latino Studies, Penn Urban Studies, Penn Gender Sexuality and Women's Studies, and the University Museum Library.
A Letter to Dad (2011)
Serbian filmmaker Srdjan Keca looks through the few boxes of belongings left behind by his late father. He finds forgotten photos, letters, and home videos, which take the film back to 1970s Yugoslavia, when his parents became lovers. But the journey through the years, to family members, lost friends and places, reveals the lingering horrors of the recent Balkan wars still tearing people and families apart. After the film, Meta Mazaj, Senior Lecturer, Penn Cinema Studies, speaks about the relationship between film and nationalism as reflected in contemporary Balkan cinema. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society, Penn Cinema Studies, the Penn Humanities Forum, Penn Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures, and the University Museum Library.
Vivir la Chicha (2003)
Chicha music, a variation on cumbia music popular in the coastal cities of Peru, evokes the experiences of the many Peruvians who have migrated from the high Andes. This film tells the story of Aurora Ramos—a worker in a sneaker factory—and the role that chicha plays in her life. After the film, Dr. Ann Farnsworth-Alvear, Associate Professor of History, Penn Latin American Studies, leads a discussion about class and music in Peruvian society. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society, Penn Cinema Studies, the Penn Humanities Forum, Penn Latin American and Latino Studies, and the University Museum Library.
Ghosts and Numbers (2009)
Set in the aftermath of the devastating financial crash of the Thai baht and the Asian monetary crisis, Ghosts and Numbers journeys with displaced farmers who can no longer work the land for a living and can only eke one out by selling lottery tickets on Bangkok streets. The film is intercut with the stories of an avid lottery seller who communicates with spirits, and of the devastating financial crash visually represented through a surreal journey through Bangkok streets. After the film, Dr. Justin McDaniel, Associate Professor for Religious Studies, and Thai political artist Skowmon Hastanan, lead filmgoers in a discussion about the spiritual world and economic politics in Thailand. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society, Penn Cinema Studies, the Penn Humanities Forum, Penn Religious Studies, and the University Museum Library.
Dal Puri Diaspora (2012)
Living in Toronto, filmmaker Richard Fung longs for dal puri, the quintessential comfort food of his native Trinidad. A trip home, and an exploration of the multicultural blending that gave rise to this traditional food, soon leads him to travel to India in search of the true origins of "authentic" dal puri. After the film, Dr. Chi-ming Yang, Asian American Studies, leads a discussion on diaspora and culture retention. As a special treat, filmmaker Richard Fung answers audience questions as part of his surprise visit to Philadelphia. Guests are invited to stay after the program for a series finale celebration with Trinidadian cuisine. Sponsored by the Philadelphia Film Society, Penn Cinema Studies, the Penn Humanities Forum, Penn Asian American Studies, Penn South Asian Studies, and the University Museum Library.
Information about the full series is available online.
The Penn Museum (the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology) is dedicated to the study and understanding of human history and diversity. Founded in 1887, the Museum has sent more than 300 archaeological and anthropological expeditions to all the inhabited continents of the world. With an active exhibition schedule and educational programming for children and adults, the Museum offers the public an opportunity to share in the ongoing discovery of humankind's collective heritage.
The Penn Museum is located at 3260 South Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 (on Penn's campus, across from Franklin Field). Public transportation to the Museum is available via SEPTA's Regional Rail Line at University City Station; the Market-Frankford Subway Line at 34th Street Station; trolley routes 11, 13, 34, and 36; and bus routes 21, 30, 40, and 42. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, and first Wednesdays of each month until 8:00 pm, with P.M. @ PENN MUSEUM evening programs offered. Closed Mondays and holidays. Admission donation is $15 adults; $13 for senior citizens (65 and above); free for U.S. Military (and free for military families over the summer, through participation with the Blue Star program); $10 for children and full-time students with ID; free to Members, PennCard holders, and children 5 and younger.
Hot and cold meals and light refreshments are offered to visitors with or without Museum admission in The Pepper Mill Café; the Museum Shop and Pyramid Shop for Children offer a wide selection of gifts, books, games, clothing and jewelry. Penn Museum can be found on the web at www.penn.museum. For general information call 215.898.4000. For group tour information call 215.746.8183.
Image captions (top to bottom): Ivonne and Adria, two volunteers in the Cuban Literacy Campaign of 1961. This campaign is the focus of Maestra (2011), the first film in this year's Second Sunday Culture Films series at the Penn Museum, presented Sunday, October 13 at 2:00 pm; Vivir la Chicha (2003) considers the impact of chicha music on the lives of the people of Peru. This film is presented Sunday, December 8 at 2:00 pm as part of the Penn Museum's Second Sunday Culture Films series; Filmmaker Richard Fung goes on an extensive search for the ideal version of a dish native to his homeland of Trinidad, in Dal Puri Diaspora (2012)—presented Sunday, February 9 at 2:00 pm as part of the Penn Museum's Second Sunday Culture Films series.