At the moment I'm packing to go to Washington, DC, where I'll be for the next several days leading a series of roundtable discussions on “The Bourgeois Virtue in Film and Fiction” with a group of think-tank specialists and policy folks. (We'll be talking about several scholarly articles as well as Gaskell's North and South, Trollope's The Way We Live Now - both remarkably timely and relevant works - along with Lodge's Nice Work, the film King Rat, and other fascinating texts.)
In other personal news, my Achilles tendon continues to improve slowly but surely, thanks in large part to intensive physical therapy I've been receiving three to four times a week from the fantastic faculty and staff members at Lenoir-Rhyne's Athletic Training Program, who are more than awesome, and to whom I'm deeply indebted. I can see quite a difference already, and I have more to go. (Patience, Grasshopper...)
In case anyone is interested, here is the final lineup of films we viewed in the "Native American Film" portion of my "Film, Fiction, and Myth" seminar. I highly recommend them all.
Reel Injun (2009, documentary)
Smoke Signals (1998)
Four Sheets to the Wind (2007)
"Our Spirits Don't Speak English": Indian Boarding School (2008, documentary)
Older Than America (2008)
Standing Silent Nation (2006, documentary)
Barking Water (2009)
Each of the graduate students also chose another film to watch/analyze independently, such as Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner (2001) and Skins (2002), among others.
Speaking of classes, this clever fan film came up in discussion as we were studying transformational works and participatory culture in the "Taking Harry Seriously" class. It's framed as a documentary about the Battle of Hogwarts, filmed twenty years after the fact (and including "interviews" with some of the participants). It's well worth watching.
The rest is as follows:
"Given a strong feeling of independence in every Darkshire man, have I any right to obtrude my views, of the manner in which he shall act, upon another (hating it as I should do most vehemently myself), merely because he has labour to sell and I capital to buy?"
- Elizabeth Gaskell, North and South