Hobart and William Smith film series offers window to vast cultures
(Feb. 10, 2004) GENEVA, N.Y.–From New Zealand to Tibet, Jamaica to Vietnam, the Hobart and William Smith community will travel the world to explore various civilizations through the series “12 Windows: Encountering Culture Through Film.”
Faculty, staff and students have selected films that will serve as “windows” into cultures often not represented in mainstream media and entertainment. The goal of the weekly series is to build a view of the world's complex human geography.
The series' first screening this semester, on Feb. 9, was “Sarafina,” a view from South Africa that recounts the political coming of age of the title character, a high school girl involved in the Soweto student protests of 1976.
“12 Windows” is organized by the Partnership for Global Education, a program of Hobart and William Smith Colleges and Union College.
Unless noted, all films are at 7 p.m. in the Sanford Room of the Warren Hunting Smith Library, on the HWS campus. All are in English or have English subtitles, and each is followed by a discussion. The films are free and open to the public. Please see http://academic.hws.edu/pge/12windows.html for more information.
• Monday, Feb. 16: “Whale Rider” (New Zealand) A girl endowed with the mystical gifts of a chieftain goes against the traditional Maori patriarchy.
• Monday, Feb. 23: “Brat/Brother” (Russia) A veteran of the Chechen war takes on the St. Petersburg mafia to save his brother.
• Sunday, Feb. 29: “Kundun” (Tibet) Martin Scorsese's glowing interpretation of the life of the Dalai Lama. This film will begin at 8 p.m.
• Monday, March 1: “The Return of Martin Guerre” (France) A man returns from battle with the same face but a totally different character.
• Monday, March 8: “The Harder they Come” (Jamaica) A rural musician travels to Kingston to become a star but is driven instead to become a notorious outlaw.
• Monday, March 22: “La Ultima Cena” (Cuba) An 18th century slave-owner re-enacts the Last Supper with 12 of his slaves, which leads to an unpredictable chain of events.
• Monday, March 29: “Nostalgia for the Countryside” (Vietnam) The tensions and traumas that accompany a love triangle in a small village serve as a subtle metaphor for the conflicts between rural and urban Vietnam.
• Monday, April 5: “100 Days” (Rwanda) A young couple is torn apart by the horrors of genocide.
• Monday, April 19: “Iphigenia” (Greece) Agamemnon sacrifices his daughter Iphigenia to the gods, provoking the wrath of his wife, Clytemnestra, and guaranteeing the fall of the House of Atreus.