Screen Arts and Cultures, University of Michigan


Ann Arbor Palestine Film Festival 

Thursday, March 19th - Sunday, March 22nd 
To view full festival schedule and locations, click here

Since its debut in the spring of 2009, The Ann Arbor Palestine Film Festival has sought to amplify Palestinian voices through screen arts and to educate the community of Ann Arbor about the arts, culture, politics, and history of Palestine. The festival includes both shorts and feature films, and offers a free matinee on Sunday, March 22nd, followed by a closing reception and an awards ceremony. Featured festival films include Mars at Sunrise, Villa Touma, followed by a "Talk Back" with Director Suha Arraf, On the Side of the Road, A World Not Ours, and Thank God It's Friday.

For a preview of all festival films, click here

This event is generously supported by the Central Student Government, the Office of Academic Multicultural Initiatives, the Islamic Studies Program, the Center for Middle Eastern and North African Studies, the Arts at Michigan, the Language Resource Center, the Frankel Center for Judaic Studies, the Institute for the Humanities, and the Departments of Comparative Literature and Screen Arts & Cultures. 

Screen Arts & Cultures Declaration and Information Event

Friday, March 20
1:00 - 3:00 p.m.
Studio A, 1440 North Quad 


Staged Reading of Little Bit

Friday, March 20
7:00 p.m.
Studio One, Walgreen Center 

Students, faculty, staff, and friends are invited to Studio One in the Walgreen Center for a staged reading of the play Little Bit, which will serve as the backdrop for Theater 399, a cross-listed class between SAC and the Department of Theater and Drama (Winter 2016) featuring filmed scenes designed by Dawn Hollison and a live stage play directed by Priscilla Lindsay and John Neville Andrews. The script, written by local playwright Mary Butler, is largely based on Caryl Flinn's book Brass Diva: The Life and Legends of Ethel Merman. Butler's work is a philosophical exploration of mental illness that manages to find moments of humor as it highlights the short life of Merman's daughter "Little Bit" who suffered from depression and anxiety disorders. Priscilla Lindsay will direct the reading which will include area professional actors, student actors, and the talents of guest artists Rita McKenzie, celebrated Ethel Merman tribute artist, and Barbara Geary, Merman's granddaughter and accomplished actress, director, and playwright. 




LSA Major/Minor Expo 

Wednesday, March 25
11:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Michigan Union Ballroom

UM students will get a chance to learn about the SAC programs at this event. 

Society for Cinema and Media Studies Conference

March 25 - March 29
Montreal, Canada 

The following SAC faculty and Ph.D. students will participate in panels and workshops at the annual Society for Cinema and Media Studies (SCMS) conference. 

On Saturday, March 29th, at 3:00 p.m., Professor Caryl Flinn will present her discussion on "The Invisible Baroness" to The Sound of Music at 50 roundtable with co-panelists Steve Cohan, Desiree Garcia, Sean Griffin, and Adreinne Maclean. The roundtable marks the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music, arguably the most loved and most despised film musical ever made. Using the film's anniversary as an opportunity to reassess its enduring legacy, this discussion brings together renowned film musical scholars to revisit the disparate attitudes toward the film and to illuminate some of its lesser-known features and histories. 

Associate Professor Dan Herbert will be presenting a paper at 1:00 p.m. on Thursday, March 26th entitled "The Media Industry is a Waste Management Industry." In this paper, Herbert looks at the history of Blockbuster video as well as contemporary archival practices at Warner Bros. in order to examine how different sectors of the media business contend with the excess and refuse they inevitably produce. 

Associate Professor Giorgio Bertellini will be presenting a paper on Saturday, March 28th entitled "On the Western Front: Raising Questions of Geopolitics and Periodizations through Latin American Film Modernity" in a panel devoted to Early Cinema and Modernity in Latin America: Fifteen Years Later. In the paper, Bertellini will re-read conventional formulations of modernity in early U.S. cinema through the lens of Ana Lopez's discussion of modernity in Latin American Contexts. 

Associate Professor Johannes von Moltke will be presenting his paper entitled "Totalitarian Communication and the Critical Theory of Propaganda" on a panel on Cold War Media and the Administration of Culture on Friday, March 27th, at 9:00 a.m. In his work, von Moltke traces the emergence of a humanist film theory out of wartime communications research by focusing on the American work of Siegfried Kracauer. He argues that, starting out with the study of propaganda, Kracauer charted his own path between the social scientific study of media by early communications scholars and the critical theory of the Frankfurt School, which subsumed propaganda under advertisement and saw in film and popular culture the proof of liberalism's quasi-totalitarian underpinnings. By contrast, von Moltke claims that Kracauer strove to rescue the liberal project and imbue it with a critical humanist theory of the media.

Associate Professor Yeidy Rivero will be presenting a paper on Saturday, March 28th, at 9:00 a.m. entitled "The Original Miami Sound Machine: The Emergence of Miami as a Production Center for the U.S. and Latin America" in which she examines the Spanish-language radio production boom that emerged in Miami in the early 1960s. The central argument is that the origins of Miami as a media capital began in this period. 

On Wednesday, March 25th, at noon, Associate Professor Sheila Murphy will be presenting her research in a talk entitled "You are the Message, Wearing the Medium: Software, Quantifiable Selves, and the New-Data Visuality of Everyday Life." In this talk, she will focus on how software programs, fitness trackers, and other forms of wearable technology utilize the logic of video games to make tasks such as exercise, good nutrition, and other metrics of "happiness" part of a game that users can win, effectively turning their bodies and lives into the medium for this form of gaming. On Friday, March 27th, at 2:15 p.m., Murphy will be participating as a respondent on a panel entitled "Para-Gaming: Gaming Beside Itself." 

Emeritus Professor Richard Abel will be presenting a talk on Wednesday, March 25th at 4:00 p.m. entitled "Researching Local and Regional Newsreels in the 1910s and the 1920s" for the Researching U.S. Film Workshop. He will also be presenting "The 'Much Vexed Problem' of Non-Theatrical Distribution in the late 1910s" on the Researching the History of Non -Theatrical Film Distribution Panel on Saturday, March 28th at 1:00 p.m.

PhD student Katy Peplin will be presenting a talk entitled "A 'Co-operational and Non-competitive Face': Early Non-theatrical Trades and the Struggle for Identity" on Saturday, March 28th, at 1:00 p.m. In this talk, she will explore the rhetoric of educational film magazines in the teens and twenties, focusing on their efforts to become professional without having to abide by the same strictures as the burgeoning Hollywood studio system. 

PhD student Feroz Hassan will be presenting a paper on Thursday, March 26th, at 11:00 a.m. entitled "Robert Bresson's Diary of a Country Priest and the French Dialectics of Hope and Despair" in which he will address the critical reception of Robert Bresson's film through the ambivalent postwar reputation of Georges Bernanos, the author of the novel upon which the film is based; in particular, he will examine the bi-polar thematics of hope and despair in Bernano's work and discuss how they are negotiated in and through Bresson's film against the background of similar concerns in postwar French culture. 

On March 19th at 1:00 p.m., PhD student Nathan Koob will be presenting a paper entitled "You Don't Have to Call Us Home, But Please Stay Here: The Local Film Commission's Management of Urban Development" in which he will discuss the diverse role of the local Film Commission and investigate what productions actually provide for these cities and local industry. 

PhD student Dimitri Pavlounis will be presenting a talk on Friday, March 27th, at 9:00 a.m. entitled "The Promise of Going Home: Queer Historiography, Queer Play, and the Archival Imagination." Using the exploration videogame Gone Home (2013) as a case study, he will examine ways in which digital games can encourage (or inhibit) our ability to investigate and engage archives in ways that question conventional archival frameworks and resist normative and normalizing historiographical methods. 

PhD student Kayti Lausch will be presenting a paper on Wednesday, March 25th, at 2:00 p.m. entitled "Living an Amish Paradise: Reality Television and the Contemporary American Fantasy of the Amish." In her presentation, she will explore the recent surge of Amish-centric reality programming through an examination of Breaking Amish, Amish Mafia, and Vanilla Ice Goes Amish and argue that these shows provide viewers a privileged place to work through anxieties about privacy, surveillance, governmental oversight, and the camera as an inevitable aspect of modern life. 

For more information, visit the SCMS website.

Ann Arbor Film Festival

March 24 -29

Michigan Theater 

The 53rd Ann Arbor Film Festival will feature more than 200 films, videos, and live performances with over 30 world, North American, and U.S. premieres. Fillmmakers and special guests in attendance include Tacita Dean, Wojciech Bakowski, Jane Cassidy, Jesse McLean, Joanna Raczynska, and Julie Murphy. On Sunday, March 29th, at 2:45 p.m., the festival will also pay a special tribute to AAFF founder George Manupelli, including a rare screening of his film Portraits, Self-Portraits and Still Lives 1972-73 with Special Reference to the Assassination of John F. Kennedy; the film will be accompanied by an original score performed live by Los Angeles-based composer David Rosenbloom. 

For a full festival schedule, click here

On March 24th at the opening night screening, Ziegler, a film directed by SAC 's Terri Sarris and Alumnus Frank Pahl will premiere. The four-minute film is based on Hermann Hesse's 1908 story entitled "A Man by the Name of Ziegler." 

Interested in volunteering for the Ann Arbor Film Festival? The following areas need volunteers: marketing, guest relations, transportation, merchandise, photography, the audience survey -- and more! Please click here for more information!

Have any upcoming SAC news or events?
Please contact by Monday of every week.



Professor Abe Markus Nornes's Book Staging Memories: Hou Hsiao-hsien's A City of Sadness Released by Maize Books.

Februrary 4th, 2015

Professor Abe Marcus Nornes's Book Hallyu 2.0 The Korean Wave in the Age of Social Media Available for Pre-Order Now!

June 28th, 2015

Associate Professor Giorgio Bertellini and Dr. Courtney Ritter's Collaboration to Appear in the Spring Issue of Cinema Journal. 

Bertellini and Ritter (SAC PhD 2014) have collaborated on a brief essay and on the translation into English of three essays by Italian screenwriter Cesare Zavattini on painting, television, and "free newsreels." Look for their work in the upcoming issue of Cinema Journal

SAC's Alexis Wierenga Wins The Michigan Association of Broadcasters Foundation's Nancy Waters and Mark Waters Scholarship Award.

Alexis is graduating this May with a dual degree in Communication Studies and Screen Arts & Cultures and plans to pursue a degree in broadcast news or television production. Congratulations and best of luck, Alexis!

Alexis is pictured in the front row, fifth from the right
March 11, 2015

PhD Students Deliver Pre-Talks for SCMS Conference Here in SAC at the Graduate Student SCMS Workshop.

Join Kayti Lausch, Dimitri Pavlounis, and Orquidea Morales (American Culture) as they present their talks in the SAC main conference room on Friday, March 20th, at 3:00 p.m. Come and support our students as they prepare to travel to Montreal next week!

March 20th, 2015

SAC's PhD Student Dimitri Pavlounis Wins Rackham Predoctorial Fellowship

The Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship Program supports outstanding doctoral students who have achieved candidacy and are actively working on dissertation research and writing; the program seeks to support students who are working on dissertations that are "unusually creative, ambitious, and risk-taking." Pavlounis is one of 72 winners in this highly competitive and prestigious award. Congratulations, Dimitri! 

March 13th, 2015


Screen Arts and Cultures
6330 North Quad
105 S. State St.
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1285

College of Literature, Science, and the Arts

phone: 734.764.0147


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