Saturday I spent the day with my Native Sisters at Norman as we had a group dinner waiting to go see the film "Drunktown's Finest" at the Native Film Festival in Norman.
Our group luncheon before the film festival was with a J.D., PhD, Two girls who recently the White House to speak about Native Education, Those of us with Masters Degrees in Native Studies and Geography. This is a group of empowered, active Native writers and students.
This young lady has represented Native students across the nation by sitting in on a "Student Voices Session" with the Department of Education. Young Native Americans Share School Culture Experiences With Secretary Duncan
He loved the horses.
As a student of Native American Studies and a person of Choctaw heritage I am saddened by seeing so many Native films which tell the story of contemporary people and reinforce stereotypes. I wonder how Native people can overcome contemporary stereotypes while reinforcing them in the stories which make it to mainstream audiences? But those are the stories that they have to tell. So, I'm conflicted, I have a friend who calls the type of movies that go into the poverty and dark side of life "Poverty porn" - and that audiences like to watch those time of films where people overcome adversity.
This years film festival was on women's voices. I missed most of it, since our weather was awful last week.
Accolades for the people who work so hard to put this festival on.
One of the actors in Drunktown's Finest.
The film that we viewed this year, Drunktown's Finest was interesting on a personal level because it was shot and set around Gallup New Mexico, which we lived 34 miles south of Gallup in Zuni during the 2003-04 School year. It was my first full year teaching and quite a life experience. I love the southwest so watching this movie's landscape brought an element of home to it, because that land felt like home while I lived there. I didn't realize the executive producer was Robert Redford. Check out the page: Drunktown's Finest. Com
This film was captivating because it held that element of a personal connection. Having lived where I did my business in Gallup and a greater understanding of what life is like on a reservation. I knew that it portrayed a certain reality.
I was going to post this before OU unfortunately made international news for the act of stupidity of a few. I am not going to use this as an opportunity to get on a soapbox about racism and class in America. I am not going to use it to rant about exclusive organizations on college campuses (I have a philosophical disagreement that we should have Greek organizations at colleges that promote hazing and exclusive rights). I'm not going into the word "Sooner" - but it is embarrassing because it is an institution that I have respect for. I refuse to let the actions of a very few undergraduates color my view of the University.