We would like to invite any interested scholars or indigenous media
artists/producers to attend a very special panel/workshop on "Indigenous Media in the Era of Globalization" to be held in Minneapolis on March 8, 2003 as part of the annual Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference.
WORKSHOP: INDIGENOUS MEDIA IN THE ERA OF GLOBALIZATION
Minneapolis, MN, March 8, 2003, 10:30-3:00
As part of the Society for Cinema and Media Studies meeting (for full
schedule and registration information, vist our website)
Hilton Minneapolis, 1001 Marquette Ave South, Minneapolis, MN, 55403
Organizer and Chair: Pam Wilson (Reinhardt College)
Brenda Chambers, Capilano College/Brenco Media, Vancouver
Kristin Dowell, New York University
Moana Sinclair, Maori filmmaker, United Nations High Commission on Human Rights
Michelle Stewart, State University of New York
Chris Spotted Eagle, Independent Filmmaker (Houma)
Indigenous or aboriginal media--that is, forms of media expression conceptualized, produced and created by indigenous peoples across the globe- have received increased attention in many parts of the world in the last five years. In 1998, Cultural Survival Quarterly devoted an entire issue of its journal, entitled "Aboriginal Media, Aboriginal Control," to the evolving relationship between media and aboriginal culture, focusing on tribally-produced media in Africa, India and North America. In 1999, the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network premiered as a cable network distributed across Canada, showcasing to a mainstream audience the artistic and cultural expressions of scores of tribal filmmakers and television producers. In 2000, a conference held in Banff, Alberta, on Public Service Broadcasting drew scholars from around the world to discuss the role of community broadcasting as a vital force in maintaining cultural identity. In the past two years, an increasing number of media productions by indigenous artists have begun to receive mainstream reception and attention, most notably Zacharias Kunuk's Inuktitut-language feature film Atanarjuat (The Fast Runner), which is the cornerstone of a new Inuit film industry. The film has swept theatres and film festivals in North America and Europe, winning coveted prizes in Cannes (Camera d'Or), Toronto, Edinburgh, Montreal and many other film festivals as well as six Genie awards in Canada.
In the past year, the birth of the Indigenous Media project of the United Nations High Commission for Human Rights has begun to establish an international network of indigenous media producers, filmmakers and journalists. The goals of this effort are to increase access by indigenous peoples to new media technologies for production and distribution of their creative works, thus raising the profile of indigenous aesthetic perspectives and cultural/political issues both in the mainstream and in new venues for indigenous media expression. This would provide increased outlets for cultural expression: combating discrimination, preserving indigenous cultures and environments, and advocating for cultural rights, such as the right to one's own language, protection of Indigenous traditional knowledge and sufficient provision of resources to indigenous peoples and their media to promote indigenous language use.
Indigenous media studies is a significant interdisciplinary field bridging the disciplines of cinema and television studies, visual anthropology, cultural studies and communication. As the leading scholarly organization for film and television studies, SCMS is a most appropriate place to provide a cultural space for an international dialogue between indigenous media producers and scholars who would otherwise not have the opportunity to come together and share their perspectives, visions, and works of art. The proposed workshop brings together prominent indigenous media producers who not only create works
of media art but who have also been instrumental in developing the industrial mechanisms and networks to enable the spread of indigenous media to a larger audience. In addition to the media artists, several media scholars from various disciplines whose research and writing have focused on indigenous media will contribute to the dialogue, as well as the active interaction of audience members. We hope to use this opportunity to build the foundations for an ongoing dialogue about the role of indigenous media in our societies both global and local.
Organizer and Chair of the Workshop is Pam Wilson (Reinhardt College), a media scholar whose work focuses on the interface between indigenous cultural issues and the media. Workshop panelists will include First Nation media producers Shirley Adamson and Brenda Chambers from western Canada (both of whom were instrumental in the formation of the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network), Maori filmmaker Moana Sinclair from New Zealand who also heads the Indigenous Media initiative for the UN High Commission on Human Rights in Geneva, Houma filmmaker and community organizer Chris Spotted Eagle from Minneapolis, media scholar Michelle Stewart (SUNY-Purchase) who recently completed her dissertation on tribal media, and visual anthropologist Kristin Dowell (NYU) who is writing a dissertation on Native filmmakers.
Department of Communication
7300 Reinhardt College Parkway
Waleska, GA 30183
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