9th Annual Human Rights Film Series

Presented by the WCL Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law

and

The Center for Social Media


October 15 – November 14, 2008

The 9th Annual Human Rights Film Series continued the tradition of exploring ways in which film and media can be used to promote and protect human rights. The theme emphasized human rights issues here in the United States, including a special event focused on the social and economic impact of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita on the Gulf Coast.

Films were screened on Wednesdays at WCL in Room 603 and Thursdays at the Wechsler Theatre on the 3rd Floor of the Mary Graydon Center on American University’s main campus. All screenings featured a post-screening discussion with award-winning filmmakers and human rights advocates.


Banished

Directed by Marco Williams (2007, 87 min)

(WCL: October 15, 6 PM, Room 603)
(AU: October 16, 5:30 PM, Wechsler Theatre)

A hundred years ago, whites cleansed their towns of Black Americans. Today, their descendants demand justice for this unknown chapter in the history of U.S. racism. Special visits with Kibibi Tyehimba, Co-Chair of the National Coalition of Blacks for Reparations in America on October 15th (WCL) and with director Marco Williams on October 16th (AU).

Click here to download the backgrounder.

To visit the official website, click here.

The Ballad of Esequiel Hernandez

Directed by Kieran Fitzgerald (2007, 90 min)

(WCL: October 22, 6 PM, Room 603)
(AU: October 23, 5:30 PM, Wechsler Theatre)

The story of Esequiel Hernandez, a young American man who was mistaken for a drug runner and killed by U.S. Marines on the Texas-Mexico border. Jenny Johnson, Senior Associate at the Latin American Working Group, and Stephanie Brewer, Legal Officer at Miguel Agustin Pro Juarez Human Rights Center (PRODH) in Mexico City, will lead a post-screening discussion (co-sponsored by LaLSA) on October 22 at WCL. Producer Brendan Fitzgerald visited AU on October 23.

Click here to download the backgrounder.

To visit the official website, click here.

At the Death House Door

Directed by Peter Gilbert & Steven James (2008, 98 min)

(WCL: October 29, 6 PM, Room 603)
(AU: October 30, 5:30 PM, Wechsler Theatre)

A look at the death penalty in Texas through the eyes of Pastor Carroll Pickett, death house chaplain for 15 years at the infamous “Walls Unit” prison in Huntsville. Brian Evans from Amnesty International’s Death Penalty Abolition campaign will visit WCL on October 29. This screening was co-sponsored by the WCL chapter of the National Lawyers Guild. Special visit with filmmaker Peter Gilbert on October 30.

Click here to download the backgrounder.

To visit the official website, click here.

SPECIAL PROGRAMMING! FILMS FOR GULF COAST RECOVERY WEEK

WCL hosted a week of discussions, films, and other events to raise awareness of Gulf Coast human rights issues three years after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. Click here for more information.

Cut Off

Directed by Broderick Webb and Edward Holub ( 2008, 45 min)

(WCL: November 12, 6 PM, Room 603)

Public hospitals, schools, and housing in New Orleans are being eliminated and radically redefined. How will this shape the “New City” and affect those who live there? Special visit with filmmaker Broderick Webb.

Click here to download the backgrounder.

When the Levees Broke

Directed by Spike Lee (2006, 64 min)

(AU: November 13, 5:30 PM, Wechsler Theatre)

On November 13, Oscar-nominated producer Sam Pollard spoke at American University as part of the film series. Part 3 of When the Levees Broke, an examination of the U.S. government’s role in the response to Hurricane Katrina and the disastrous series of events that devastated the city and its people, was screened.

Click here to download the backgrounder.

To visit the official website, click here.

Promotional Materials:

Download the Film Series poster here

Download the e-blast here

WCL Address: 4801 Massachusetts Avenue, Washington, DC

American University Address Mary Graydon Center): 4400 Massachusetts Avenue, Washington, DC

For more information or to request accommodations for persons with disabilities, please call the Center at 202-274-4180 or e-mail humlaw@wcl.american.edu or the Center for Social Media at 202-885-3107 or socialmedia@american.edu.

The 9th Annual Human Rights Film Series was sponsored by the Washington College of Law Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law and the School of Communication’s Center for Social Media, in collaboration with the Center for Global Peace, the School of International Service’s International Peace and Conflict Resolution Program, and the Office of the University Chaplain, all of American University.

Click here for previous Human Rights Film Series programming