October 18, 2020
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(A)bridging Community: Social Responsibility During Multiple Pandemics

Welcome to (A)bridging Community: Social Responsibility During Multiple Pandemics, a virtual art exhibition curated by Chatham University student Chenoa Baker (’21, Cultural Studies) and hosted by the Jennie King Mellon Library. Starting October 18th, 2020, carefully selected pieces of art and corresponding library resources will be posted to the JKM Library’s Instagram and Facebook feeds over the course of a week. The entire exhibition (including information on the artwork, artists, and library resources) has been gathered together here as well.

Curatorial Statement

“We live in a moment that exposes our interconnections. They exist as bifurcations: an afterthought for some and constant reminders of inequalities as well as white supremacist capitalist patriarchy for others. At the intersection of two pandemics, we see that the innocent bystander is complicit, the moderate is a danger, and without bridging these connections with compassion, we sever the bridge we stand on and crumble into the water.”

Selected Works

Kim, Byron. Synecdoche. 1991, National Gallery of Art, Washington, DC.

Byron Kim (b.1961) is a contemporary Korean-American artist who explores racial identity through minimalist art. Synecdoche, one of his most famous artworks, is a collection of paint swatches matched to random sitters of different races. Some view this work as a collage of people, their untold stories, and the color of their skin speaking for them. Others may see this as a variety of people who are individuals part of the whole; similarly, the squares, put together, represent the human race.

Shimoyama, Devan. February II. 2019.

Devan Shimoyama (b. 1989) is a Pittsburgh-based artist and Assistant Professor at Carnegie Mellon University. Shimoyama creates renderings of glittery fantasies and anxieties around navigating Blackness and queerness. He creates images with paint, collage, and glass to communicate his message. February II, dedicated to Trayvon Martin, signifies the innocence of Black children killed by police brutality by representing them with an article of clothing—the hoodie. The hoodie masks their true identity and skews their adolescence because of the lens of white supremacy. White supremacy obscures the child inside into a perception of suspicion. (Follow on Instagram @DevanShimoyama)

Ballard, Lavett. Hear My Call. 2020.

Lavett Ballard (b.1970) is a collage artist, curator, and art historian. She primarily uses the medium of wooden fences and wood. She reclaims this wood to represent a retelling of Black history. In her work of Breonna Taylor, Hear My Call, she celebrates her life and the collective that shaped who she was. There are motifs of flowers, circles, and a butterfly to represent femininity, softness, and transition of her life. Typically, in Black tradition, death is accompanied by a celebration of life, a time to dwell in grief and deep lamentation and to remember the interconnected network of ancestors that welcomes the deceased person into the fold. (Follow on Facebook at @LavettBallardArt)

Benjamin, Gavin. Dressed to Kill no. 1 (Hoodie). 2020, Parlor Gallery, Asbury Park, NJ.

Gavin Benjamin (b.1971) is a Guyanese Pittsburgh-based artist that works in paint and a variety of appliqued materials. His most famous series is Heads of State, which depicts portraits of Black royalty in a distinct Neo-Baroque style. In Dressed to Kill, Benjamin layers images onto the subject’s hoodie and face. On the subject are images of protests, George Floyd’s phrase during the time of his death “I can’t breathe,” and Skittles and Arizona drinks that Trayvon Martin and others picked up from a corner store before their deaths. All of these markers on the body and provocative title, stresses that victims of police brutality are dressed in a multilayered story ignored during their murder. (Follow on Instagram @gavinbenjamin)

Leff, Rosa. The Real Pandemic. 2020, private collection.

Rosa Leff is an artist and educator that is known for her paper cutting prowess. She cuts elaborate cityscapes by hand and by X-Acto knife. The Real Pandemic is an accumulation of already present pathologies—systemic racism, a failing healthcare system, and broken economic infrastructure. Through the pandemic, it shows that we lost some of our main tenants of community. While we revisit this concept, police are central to the narrative of state power that was never created for the community and only disrupts it more by metaphorically tearing down bridges and literally ripping apart families. (Follow on Instagram @rosaleff)

Click on the images below to view enlarged versions.

Library Resources

Art can be described as the culmination of cultural, social, and historical context into statements, stories, and expression of creativity. Knowing that context can dramatically change the reading of a piece, but it is not always necessary to appreciate the work. At the Jennie King Mellon Library, we do believe that discovering and understanding the context behind a piece of information (such as a work of art) is critical to full understanding. We try to communicate that importance through our work as library and information professional. To that end, here is a list of resources that we feel can help aid in building your personal understanding of the context behind these pieces.

Library Books

Other Library Resources

  • Issues & Controversies Database
    • Issues & Controversies is a wonderful tool for both academic and personal use. Focusing on controversial topics such as systemic racism, Issues & Controversies gathers pro-con articles, primary source material, news publications, various media content, court cases, editorials, etc. to help offer a well-rounded view of difficult topics we see on the news and in life. It is an excellent tool for helping build context and understanding around some of the most hot-button topics of the day.
  • Adam Matthew Collection
    • The Adam Matthew Collection contains multiple relevant collections of primary source materials that touch on America’s history with white supremacy, Civil Rights, enslavement, and race relations. These materials are important when becoming familiar with our own history, especially when looking at the role community plays. Documents, newspapers, images, illustrations from the time, artifacts, and more all ground researchers in the correct historical context.
    • African American Communities: Focusing predominantly on Atlanta, Chicago, New York, and towns and cities in North Carolina this resource presents multiple aspects of the African American community through pamphlets, newspapers and periodicals, correspondence, official records, reports, and in-depth oral histories, revealing the prevalent challenges of racism, discrimination and integration, and a unique African American culture and identity.
    • Race Relations in America: Documenting three pivotal decades in the fight for civil rights, this resource showcases the speeches, reports, surveys, and analyses produced by the Department’s staff and Institute participants, including Charles S. Johnson, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Thurgood Marshall.
    • Slavery, Abolition & Social Justice: This resource is designed as an important portal for slavery and abolition studies, bringing together documents and collections covering an extensive time period, between 1490 and 2007, from libraries and archives across the Atlantic world. Close attention is given to the varieties of slavery, the legacy of slavery, the social justice perspective, and the continued existence of slavery today.
  • Do Not Resist | Streaming on AVON
    • DO NOT RESIST is an urgent and powerful exploration of the rapid militarization of the police in the United States. Starting on the streets of Ferguson, Missouri, as the community grapples with the death of Michael Brown, DO NOT RESIST – the directorial debut of DETROPIA cinematographer Craig Atkinson – offers a stunning look at the current state of policing in America and a glimpse into the future.
  • The Hate U Give | Media Shelves | 791.4372 H283t
    • Amandla Stenberg, Regina Hall, Russell Hornsby, Anthony Mackie, Issa Rae, Algee Smith, K.J. Apa, Common. Starr Carter navigates the perilous waters between her poor, black neighborhood and her prestigious, mainly white private school. This all changes when she finds herself in the middle of racial activism after her best friend is shot by police officers, and she’s forced to make a decision. Allow the media to skewer her friend to protect the status quo, or stand up and tell the truth in memory of Khalil?
  • Roots | Media Shelves | 791.4372 R678h
    • An adaptation of Alex Haley’s “Roots”, in which Haley traces his African American family’s history from the mid-18th century to the Reconstruction era.

You can find more relevant resources on our Black Lives Matter resource guide.

May 27, 2020
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An Introduction to Academic Video Online (AVON): Feel-Good Videos to Stream During Quarantine

The JKM Library has a new database worth checking out! Academic Video Online (AVON) is a premier database that holds over 68,000 videos spanning a variety of disciplines and subjects. Whether you’re in the mood for a documentary, news, feature films, or interviews, AVON has access across the board. Explore videos of different genres, lengths, and age, and expand your horizons; search for the exact title you’re looking for, or just peruse the homepage! The database’s wide variety provides a well-rounded collection of both educational and entertaining resources, and Chatham users can see it all! Here’s a few titles that both highlight the diversity of AVON and can lift your spirits!

Image of the cast of Candide1.) Candide, libretto by Leonard Bernstein

Bernstein’s operatic adaptation of Voltaire novella comes to life in the 2004 production with the New York Philharmonic, featuring the musical stylings of theatre giants like Kristin Chenoweth and Patti LuPone. The show tells the story of the eponymous protagonist as he traverses through adulthood meeting bizarre new people and learning important life lessons. Candide boasts an impressive score full of bright, exuberant numbers and an overall feeling of comedy and joy throughout. Viewers can expect to laugh their way all the way through this musical adventure. A true testament to the quality of AVON’s performing arts selection, Candide is fun for everyone.

Film poster for Land Ho!2.) Land Ho!, directed by Aaron Katz and Martha Stephens

Here’s one raucous comedy evokes the feeling of the ’80s road trip movies, but turns the trope on its head with its elderly protagonist. This feature film follows former brothers-in-law Mitch and Colin as they attempt to relive their youth while taking a trip through Iceland. This indie darling is simple and character-driven, and while it has the occasional heavy moment, the majority of Land Ho! is chock full of quirk and witty humor. Coupled with the beautiful scenery of Reykjavik, this movie is a short and sweet romp that prioritizes mischief, friendship, and the idea that we all need someone to be there for us every now and then.

Film poster for Awake3.) Awake: The Life of Yogananda, directed by Pablo Di Florio and Lisa Leeman

In this documentary, the life of acclaimed yogi Paramahansa Yogananda serves as the subject. His story of enlightenment and self-discovery is juxtaposed against his personal struggles growing up, and paints an incredible picture of his journey. Often credited as bringing yoga to the west via his memoir Autobiography of a Yogi, Yogananda’s grounded view of life and practice of self-realization helped to propel yoga into the mainstream. This documentary would be a great fit both for those who want to further inform their practice of yoga, meditation, and mindfulness as well as those brand new to the topic and wanting to learn more.

Film poster for Fermented4.) Fermented, directed by Jonathan Cianfrani

Part science, part history, all educational, this documentary explores the roots of one of oldest forms of food preservation, perfect for the sustainability-savvy viewer. Learn all about the different ways that fermentation can occur, from pickling to making alcohol, and their importance to the world of food! Host Edward Lee is incredibly passionate about exploring this food practice, and his enthusiasm could very well extend to the viewer. Considering the growing popularity of food studies and sustainable food practice, this film would serve as a great supplement to learning about current food trends–canning and pickling may make a quarantine comeback!

Film poster for Mister Rogers It's You I Like5.) Mister Rogers: It’s You I Like, directed by John Paulson

Nothing says “feel-good” quite like Mister Rogers. 2019 gave us two great movies, Won’t You Be My Neighbor and A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, but this earlier documentary pays homage directly to Mister Rogers’ television legacy. Highlighting some of the show’s most memorable clips and performances, and featuring interviews with celebrities on how Mister Rogers shaped their lives, It’s You I Like gives an inside glimpse of the importance of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood in its 900 episode run. You’re guaranteed to finish this documentary with a smile on your face, and an even greater understanding of the importance of this hometown hero on children’s television.

These are just a few of the thousands of titles available through AVON. Whether you’re interested in a three-minute mindfulness video, a fashion show, or a virtual trip to the orchestra, AVON has something for everyone. Watch with your significant other, your kids, or with friends, maybe host a Zoom watch party–regardless of what you choose, the possibilities seem endless! Access the database here, and remember to also check out our other available library resources during our closure. Happy watching!

Carina Stopenski is the Access Services Associate at Chatham University’s Jennie King Mellon Library. They started out as a student worker while getting their creative writing degree at Chatham, and have since started working on their Master’s of Library Science at Clarion University. They enjoy games of both the board and video persuasion, vegan baking, and reading graphic novels.

February 12, 2020
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“Issues for the 90s” on View in the JKM Library

Archival footage on display in the JKM Library

As part of an ongoing, rotating showcase of recently digitized media in the lobby of the JKM Library, the Chatham University Archives & Special Collections is pleased to present “Issues for the 90s: A Conversation with the President.”  This film features Dr. Rebecca Stafford, President of Chatham from 1983 until 1990, discussing a proposal for coeducation brought forth to the college community in 1990.  The footage was reformatted through support from the Council of Independent Colleges.  Members of the Chatham community and the public are welcome to enjoy the presentation.

The film digs into the questions and concerns alumnae had in the 1990s about the coeducation proposal, enrollment issues, and the future of Chatham College (now University).  According to the footage, coeducation was being considered because of concern about enrollment projections and a desire to sustain the institution.  Dr. Stafford mentions that growth in adult education at women’s colleges, like the Gateway Program at Chatham, served to increase enrollment numbers overall but did not provide a sustainable model over the long term.  Rather, she concluded, Chatham needed to develop a plan to attract more residential students.

Moreover, it is illuminating to learn that coeducation had been considered several times over the course of Chatham’s history.  The footage of Dr. Stafford was recorded in February of 1990, a full twenty-five years before Chatham’s undergraduate programs became coed.  The Coeducation Debate Collection (click here for the finding aid) includes records of the first formal consideration of coeducation at Chatham in the late 1960s and petitions from faculty, students, and alumnae when the issue was raised in 1990.  In the footage on view, Dr. Stafford mentions that Board of Trustees discussed coeducation when changing the school’s name from The Pennsylvania College for Women to Chatham in the 1950s.  She notes the trustees were concerned that Chatham must “have a name that doesn’t have `women’ in it.”

Board of Trustee Minutes from 1954 discussing coeducation.

The “Issues for the 90s: A Conversation with the President” is on view in the JKM Library lobby for the enjoyment of members of the public and the Chatham community.  Those interested in exploring the history of coeducation at Chatham are encouraged to explore the film and related material in the Chatham University Archives and Special Collections.

By Janelle Moore, Archives Assistant, and Molly Tighe, Archivist & Public Services Librarian

June 17, 2019
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University Archives Displays Footage of 1966 Commencement Featuring Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara

The Chatham University Archives & Special Collections is pleased to share a selection from the Historical Film Collection featuring footage of the 1966 Commencement ceremony, the address given by then Secretary of Defense Robert McNamara, and the protest that occurred outside the event venue.  Captured by WTEA News, a portion of this footage is currently on view through September 22 at the Heinz History Center as part of their engaging and thought-provoking exhibit, Vietnam War: 1945 – 1975.  The complete footage, including shots of an airport welcome by Chatham President Edward Eddy and extended views of the protests, is on view in the lobby of the Jennie King Mellon Library.  Stop by, use the headphones (or read the captions!), and take a few moments to consider this moment in history.

1966 Commencement Footage in the JKM Library Lobby

So, why was the Secretary of Defense speaking at the Chatham commencement?  Keep reading…

But first, a little background on McNamara.  Born in 1916, McNamara received degrees from the University of California and from Harvard Business School.  Disqualified from combat during WWII due to poor vision, he served in the Army Air Force developing logistical and statistical systems for a variety of war activities.  Following the war, McNamara rose through the ranks of the Ford Motor Company, serving as company president for one month before accepting an appointment in the Kennedy administration as Secretary of Defense in 1961.

Sec. McNamara at podium at 1966 Commencement, PCC003, Chronological Photograph Files, Chatham University Archives

McNamara is known for the controversial role he played in escalating US involvement in the Vietnam War.  Under McNamara’s leadership, the number of American troops—originally sent to Vietnam to train the Army of the Republic of Vietnam—increased rapidly.  A fabricated “attack” on the American military in the Gulf of Tonkin in 1964 allowed the US military to justify increased engagement in the region and McNamara led President Johnson, Congress, and the American public to believe that this further escalation was necessary to prevent the expansion of communism. McNamara is believed to have privately questioned US military involvement as early as 1965 and he launched a secret investigation of the US commitment to the war.  Records of this investigation were leaked to the public in 1971 and are known today as the Pentagon Papers.  Having recommended, in a memo to President Johnson, that US involvement should be scaled back, McNamara resigned and became President of the World Bank.

US involvement in Vietnam continued and the sentiment of the American public soured.  In 1965, 64% of the American public approved of US involvement in Vietnam. Four years later, approval numbers had sunk to 39%, with 52% considering the war to be a mistake. Months and months of regular US troop deployments turned into years, while news broadcasts delivered a gruesome reality of war casualties and wounded soldiers into living rooms across the country.  Television broadcasts also presented the war’s impact on the Vietnamese population, many of whom became refugees after their homes were destroyed.

Newspaper Clipping showing protesters outside Chatham College 1966 Commencement ceremony.

In this video, captured by WTAE Channel four, you’ll see the anti-war protesters picketing in front of Carnegie Music Hall in Oakland, where Robert McNamara was gave the commencement address for Chatham College’s Class of 1966.  Kathleen McNamara, his daughter, was a member of the graduating class.  The video begins with McNamara’s arrival to Pittsburgh, where he was greeted by a crowd of cheerful people, including Chatham President Edward Eddy.  There is a stark contrast between the airport greeting and the footage of the protesters, who marched outside the commencement venue carrying signs decrying the military activity in Vietnam.  Protest signs were written in both English and Vietnamese.

The speech given by Sec. McNamara, titled “The Age of Protest,” acknowledges the controversies surrounding the Vietnam War.  McNamara’s speech discusses freedom of dissent as a “privilege” available to the American public, but only an aspiration for the citizens of Vietnam. In his speech, McNamara presents the victimization of both the East and the West through the “bureaucratic tyranny of technology and autocracy that’s gradually depersonalizing and aliening modern man himself.”

1966 Chatham Commencement materials on display in the Heinz History Center’s Vietnam: 1945-1975 exhibit.

The Chatham University Archives is honored to loan material to the Senator John Heinz History Center for their exhibition on the Vietnam War.  Combining material from the New York Historical Society and  the Detre Library & Archives’ rich collection, the exhibit presents this tumultuous period in world history with both a global and a local perspective.  In connection with the exhibit, the Heinz History is presenting a series of lectures by journalists, academics, and writers offering a variety of perspectives on the war and its aftermath.  The complete footage of the 1966 commencement address by Sec. Robert McNamara is on view in the library of the JKM Library, Chatham University, and the text of the speech is available through the Chatham University Archives.

May 31, 2014
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From Page to Screen Results (A Post of Lists)

Erich Von Stroher’s 1925’s “Greed” was the first motion picture made based upon a book. It is rumored that the director wanted to be as true to the book as possible, and the director’s original cut was nine and a half hours long.

Summertime is the time for relaxation and enjoyment- but we know better than that. Now that you don’t need to worry about answering questions that your professors are asking, you can ask some questions of your own. Big questions, nothing but the most pressing, most important questions- the ones that can keep you up late into the night.

Why are we here?

What are my responsibilities to the human race, the earth, the universe?

Is death the end? Is anything irreparable?

Is the book always better than the movie?

Recently, we asked you what was your favorite book that had been turned into a movie and we got an awful lot of different and interesting responses; running the Gambit from new, popular books and movies, like The Hunger Games and The Diary of a Wimpy Kid to classic pairings like Pride and Prejudice and The Count of Monte Cristo. Many of the books, and some of the movies we have here at the library!

 

The following lists encapsulate what you’ve written as your favorite books that have been turned into movies (or your favorite movies based on books). Hopefully these resources can help you in answering the question, Is the book always better?

Favorite Pairings that the Library has both versions of

Lord of the Rings Trilogy

Book-The Lord of the Rings

 DVD- The Lord of the Rings Trilogy

To Kill a Mockingbird

Book

DVD

 

Listed items we have the Book for

The Hobbit

Pride and Prejudice

Downloadable E-Book

The Hunger Games Series

The Hunger Games

Catching Fire

Mocking Jay

Harry Potter Series

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone

Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets

Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Great Gatsby

The Watchman

Wise Blood

Persuasion

Schindler’s List

The Perks of Being A Wallflower

The Virgin Suicides

Ghost World

Snow White

The Count of Monte Cristo

Twilight

1984

Alice in Wonderland

Life of Pi

One Flew over the Cuckoo’s nest

Stories we have the movie version of, but not the book

The Godfather

 

Other favorites (As a temporary or full-time resident of Pittsburgh, you’ll likely be able to gain access to many of these titles through the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh System)

Diary of a Wimpy Kid

The Princess Bride

The World According to Garp

The Shining

Howls Moving Castle

Whip It/Derby Girl

Never Let Me Go

Time Travelers Wife

The Host

The Fog

The Golden Compass

The Children of Men

Half of a Yellow Sun

50 Shades of Grey

A Walk to Remember

How to Train your Dragon

 

Here are some other book/movie pairing we have that were not mentioned

Dirt: The Ecstatic Skin of the Earth

Dirt! The movie

Ben Hur: A Tale of The Christ (Book)

Ben Hur: Film (Movie)

Jurassic Park

Jurassic Park (Movie)

The Lord of the Flies

The Lord of the Flies (Movie)

The Odyssey

O Brother, Where Art Thou (A Loose adaptation)

Sense and Sensibility

The Wonderful Wizard of OZ

The Wizard of OZ

Zorba the Greek

Zorba the Greek (Movie)

Movies at the JKM Library that you may not have known were originally based on books

American Splendor

Blade Runner

I, Robot

The Basketball Diaries

The Graduate

The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen

Mystic River

The Notebook

Practical Magic

Seabiscuit

 

 

Upcoming movies based on books we have here at Chatham

The Fault in Our Stars

The Giver

Gone Girl

Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day

Thérèse Raquin

A Book of Common Prayer

Far from the Maddening Crowd

April 16, 2014
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From Page to Screen

Do you have a favorite book to film adaptation? Weigh in on our window poll at the library during finals week, then make your way inside to check out a film from the collection. Just in time to unwind from finals anxiety, treat yourself to some down time with one of the following films or others on display on the First Floor:

Je4112For classics transformed for the silver screen try one of the many adaptations of Jane Austen’s Emma or Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre. The first film version of Jane Eyre hit the screen in 1910 and the latest was released in 2011….Over 100 years of this Gothic classic!

Looking for an epic movie marathon? Check out the film adaptation of Tolkien’s The Lord of the Rings. The total running time for the extended edition on DVD is 681 minutes or 11.35 hours. Recommended for only the most stalwart movie watchers.

2

For those who enjoy comic books and graphic novels, try Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis or Alan Moore’s V for Vendetta. The former is told through Satrapi’s recognizable black and white illustrations in French with English subtitles. In the live action retelling, Hugo Weaving’s V brings to life the masked revolutionary.

9783145_detOn display are also a few lesser known adaptations. Did you know that the character Zorro first appeared as serialized stories in 1919? Antonio Banderas and Catherine Zita Jones starred in the film released in the mid-1990s. And don’t miss the Cohen brothers’ film, O Brother Where art Thou, which is loosely based on on Homer’s The Odyssey. Can you identify some of the familiar themes and images that were preserved in the film?

 

 

Image credits:

http://pelicanpromotions.com.au/dalton/Je4112.jpg

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/c/c0/V_for_vendettax.jpg

http://fandomania.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/04/2.jpg

http://content7.flixster.com/movie/97/83/14/9783145_det.jpg

September 4, 2012
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Looking for an Interesting Movie?

ANGELA RECOMMENDS

If you are looking for a good movie to watch, Angela Wiley, one of the library’s fabulous student workers, suggests the following DVDs from the library’s collection:

Grizzly Man (2005)

I began watching this film one rainy afternoon, less than an hour before the Spring 2012 Minor Bird launch party/reading. As the launch party grew closer, my jaw dropped lower. The phone rang, the clock ticked, and I wanted to stop time so I could see what happened. I have since sat with a half dozen friends, watching Grizzly Man with them for the first time. Herzog demonstrates why he is a renowned media maker, and arguably toes the line with his control over the screen. My advice? Do not google Timothy Treadwell, do not start watching this right before the Minor Bird launch, and for heaven’s sake turn off your phone once you hit Play. This film will send you on a ride where you may end up with more questions about life than answers.

Good Bye Lenin! (2004)

Please don’t judge this film by its blank box. Inside you’ll find a rich story, capturing a son’s dilemma when the Berlin Wall falls and his GDR loyal mother awakes from a coma. If you have ever bent the truth to protect someone you love, this film will present the conundrum, beautifully. Our anti-hero salvages old pickle jar labels, draws the blinds tight, and coerces family to sing songs from the old Republic to keep his mother from her worst nightmare. Ultimately, I became as invested in the lie as the son, cringing at the implications if it should shatter. Give this film a chance for all the typical reasons: it’s gorgeous, heartfelt and most importantly, thought provoking.

 

~All reviews written by Angela Wiley.

February 14, 2012
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Looking for a Good Movie?

If you are looking for a good movie to watch, Angela Wiley, one of the library’s fabulous student workers, suggests the following DVDs from the library’s collection:

Well-Founded Fear (2000)

I know, you really want to grab Zoolander, or some Johnny Depp movie to calm your mind…after all, films are about escaping, right? Consider Well-Founded Fear, a documentary about people seeking political asylum in the United States. Their flight from ‘home’ finds them across the desk from a number of immigrant officials who have the power to grant or deny entry. You’ve gathered by this point that the escape of a political refugee is much different than the temporary peace one can find in a dark movie theater. While watching this film, I became fascinated with the role chance can play in such a high stakes meeting – your immigration official may be jaded, or an empathetic rookie. And what in the world constitutes “well-founded fear”? I still don’t know, but certainly stayed up at night thinking about it after watching this film.

Gasland (2010)

If this film were a person, it would put both hands on your shoulders, shake you, and shout “HOW CAN YOU LET THIS HAPPEN?!” The exploration of hydraulic fracturing in Gasland finds landowner Josh Fox up to his elbows in water samples, polluted landscapes, and powerful personalities. People affected by “fracking” tell the story here, because they live with it every day. After several decades in practice, the rules and ingredients of this extractive process remain contested in growing public debate. Receiving wide popularity in the Marcellus Shale region among activists, Gasland has also been recognized with an Oscar nod and special jury prize at Sundance. Do not leave Pittsburgh or Chatham without watching this!

Blade Runner (2000)

Before Lady Gaga, there was Daryl Hannah in a post-apocalyptic junk room with one haunting black stripe smeared across her eyes. Blade Runner presents breath-taking lighting, spectacular cinematography and just enough action to make you crave a little more. The story settles on pertinent destruction of replicants, a danger to society…it seems simple enough, but can be read from a political, gendered, or even biblical perspective. Alternatively, you can be wowed by the beautifully crafted film and dig no further for signs and symbols.

 

~All reviews written by Angela Wiley.

June 28, 2011
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Check out a DVD

Looking for something to do in all your summer free time?  Check out a DVD from the JKM Library!  From musicals like Mamma Mia! and Wizard of Oz to more educational flicks such as Food, Inc. or Guns, Germs, and Steel to movies that are just pure fun like The Big Lebowski or Drive Me Crazy or Zoolander, the JKM Library has an interesting selection!

Use our website to search for movies you’d like to see or browse the collection in the library (the DVDs are located to the left of the elevator).

January 28, 2011
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Library Newsletter

The Spring 2011 edition of Library News is now available.  Read about all the great materials and services being offered by the JKM Library, including:

  • A new, easier way to track down full text articles;
  • Three great new databases: Global Road Warrior, Counseling & Therapy in Video, and American History in Video;
  • News from the Chatham University Archives;
  • And much more!
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