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SU film festival tackles oppression, resistance, disability, diversity, Sept. 25-Nov. 27
SU film festival tackles oppression, resistance, disability, diversity, Sept. 25-Nov. 27September 21, 2006Carol K. Masiclatclkim@syr.edu
The Beyond Compliance Coordinating Committee (BCCC) will present its 2006 film series, “Imagine That: Oppression and Resistance in Film,” Sept. 25-Nov. 27. BCCC invites SU students, faculty and staff, and Syracuse community members to use their imaginations to identify the oppression and resistance demonstrated in the featured films and then examine the responses of self-resistance that the films invoke in viewers.
Screenings will be held on Monday evenings at 7 p.m. in Watson Theater in the Robert B. Menschel Media Center, 316 Waverly Ave.
Through the series, the committee hopes to contribute to the campus community by informing, challenging, stimulating and broadening the perceptions and awareness of campus community members regarding disability and its intersections with other forms of diversity such as race, class, gender and sexuality. The series includes major motion pictures, both historical and current, independent films and television shows.
“This film series invites members of Syracuse University and the community to challenge media portrayals and stereotypes of oppression, subversion and resistance in film through discussion and responsive viewing,” says Corrie Burdick, one of the event’s organizers. “The films and discussions will help to interrogate the response of viewers and inform about the historical, societal, cultural and media complexities embedded in these media representations. Participants are encouraged to imagine a more just society that questions stereotypes and prejudices that ‘reinstitutionalize’ not only the disabled, but other subjugated groups as well.”
The series opens Sept. 25 with the critically acclaimed 2005 documentary “Murderball.”
SU funders and co-sponsors of the series include BCCC; the Center on Disability Studies, Law, and Human Policy; the Facilitated Communication Institute; the School of Education; U-Encounter; the Kaleidoscope Project; the LGBT Resource Center; the Writing Program; the dis/Ability Law Society; the Office of Disability Services; the Department of Sociology; the Slutzker Center for International Services; the College of Human Services and Health Professions; and the Office of Greek Life and Experiential Learning.
BCCC is an organization of SU students who are working to create and support a positive climate toward disability that values individual difference in all University settings. Recently updated platforms of its mission statements reflect the accomplishments of its old platforms and its ongoing progressive commitments to move things forward “beyond compliance.” BCCC takes an active role in advocating for changes in University policy and practice, including:reshaping SU’s conception of disability to promote an understanding of disability as a form of diversity; gaining University recognition and funding of the Disability Studies program; creating model accommodations exemplifying the University’s commitment to equality of opportunity for students with disabilities; andhiring faculty and staff members with disabilities within departments across the University.
Beyond Borders film series schedule (1 of 2) “Imagine That: Oppression and Resistance in Film”
Sept. 25: “Murderball” — a thrilling documentary about quad rugby as played by the U.S. team, between 2002 games in Sweden and the 2004 Paralympics in Athens. Young men, most with spinal cord injuries, play this rough and tumble sport in special chairs. Viewers get to know several of them and their families as they talk frankly about their injuries, feelings in public, sex lives, competitiveness and love of the game. After Athens, the team meets young men injured in war, the future stars of Team USA. A panel of disabled athletes will lead a post-screening discussion. (Rated R, 88 minutes, 2005)
Oct. 16: “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest” — Groundbreaking, provocative classic, based on the novel by the same name. McMurphy, a man with several assault convictions to his name, finds himself in jail once again. This time, the charge is statutory rape when it turns out that his girlfriend had lied about being 18 and was, in fact, 15 (or, as McMurphy puts it, “15 going on 35”). Rather than spend his time in jail, he convinces the guards that he’s crazy enough to need psychiatric care and is sent to a hospital. He fits in frighteningly well, and his different point of view actually begins to cause some of the patients to progress. Nurse Ratched becomes his personal cross to bear as his resistance to the hospital routine gets on her nerves. A panel of psychiatric survivors/ people with psychiatric disabilities will inform the post-screening discussion. (Rated R, 133 minutes, 1975)
Oct. 30: “Rory O’Shea Was Here” — Recent critically acclaimed fiction. Michael is a 24-year-old who has cerebral palsy and is a long-term resident of the Carrigmore Residential Home for the Disabled, run by the formidable Eileen. His life is transformed when the rebelling Rory O’Shea moves in. Michael is stunned to discover that fast-talking Rory, who can move only his right hand, can understand his almost unintelligible speech. Rory’s dynamic and rebellious nature soon sparks a flame in Michael, introducing him to a whole new world outside of Carrigmore, as they move from the institution into community living. Douglas Biklen, dean of SU’s School of Education and professor of cultural foundations of education and disability studies, will facilitate the post-screening discussion, along with self advocates. (Rated R, 104 minutes, 2004)
Nov. 13: “X-Men III: The Last Stand” — The X-Men, mutant heroes sworn to defend a world that hates and fears them, are based on the famous comic series of the same name. This time, with the help of new recruits, they must face evolution itself in the form of their former teammate, Jean Grey. Possessed with the cosmic power of the Dark Phoenix, the resurrected Jean Grey has become a danger to herself, her mutant comrades and the entire planet. To stave off this imminent threat to humanity, a potential cure is discovered and processed to treat — and ultimately eliminate — genetic mutations, once and for all. Now, as the battle lines are drawn, the X-Men, led by Professor Charles Xavier, a wheelchair user and telepath, must contend with both Jean Grey’s world-consuming powers, as well as the malevolent Brotherhood, a band of powerful mutants organized under Xavier’s former ally, Magneto. This movie creates a compelling analogy to disability, queerness and other forms of difference, and asks, “Would you want to be cured? What is the burden of difference?” Disability and LGBT scholars will contextualize the movie and facilitate discussion. (Rated PG-13, 104 minutes, 2006)
Nov. 27: Animated Comedy Shorts — A panel of BCCC members and members of other organizations across campus will lead a discussion during the evening to examine the messages of these comedy shorts. (various ratings, times, years of release):
“Drawn Together — Terms of Endearment” — Captain Hero uses his X-ray vision to spy on the girls in the shower. As a result of his doing it too much, Foxxy receives a brain tumor. Afterwards, Captain Hero feels so guilty that he decides to give up his powers, which makes him a quadriplegic in a breath-controlled wheelchair.
“South Park — Krazy Kripple” — It’s stand-up comedy night for Jimmy, only there is no one in the audience, except for Butters. Everyone else in town is at an appearance by Christopher Reeve. Jimmy is outraged and he goes to the place where Christopher Reeve is making an appearance to support stem cell research. Reeve promises everyone that in the coming days he will prove that stem cell research is a miracle. Jimmy and Timmy form a club for those who have been crippled since birth. They flaunt it in front of the boys, who don’t want anything to do with it. Jimmy and Timmy try to get T-shirts made for their new club, “The Crips.”
“Family Guy — Petarded” — Peter Griffin does well at Trivial Pursuit and claims he’s a genius. Brian challenges him to take an IQ test. Peter is game, and the result indicates he isn’t exactly Mensa material. The administrator shows the chart on the left to explain where Peter’s result places him — on the lower end of “retarded,” right above “creationists.”