This category contains 7 posts

Midway Conversations 2015: Neighborhood Documentary Projects Premiere

 “We aren’t training to be filmmakers, but use our cameras to learn. Our neighbors have taught us so much.” This past Sunday afternoon our Visual Anthropology class hosted its fourth annual public screening and “thank you” party for our neighborhood—The Hamline Midway. While in previous years we had an early evening slot, this year the … Continue reading

Midway Conversations 2014: Neighborhood Documentary Projects Premiere

On May 20th from 5:30-7:30pm at a local neighborhood venue, the Turf Club, this spring’s Visual Anthropology class premiered their final mini-documentary projects to a packed house of 100-120 people. This was the second such public event (the first was written about here) and the first to actually be pulled off during finals week at the … Continue reading

University Avenue: One Street, A Thousand Dreams

This morning, while doing some preparing for this spring semester’s visual anthropology class, I located an online posting of the locally produced documentary, University Avenue: One Street, A Thousand Dreams. The documentary, which premiered on our local Public Television Station in late 2012, provides a nice historical context for the area in which the Hamline-Midway neighborhood is … Continue reading

Cannibal Tours

A year ago a student borrowed our university library’s copy of Dennis O’Rourke’s classic film, Cannibal Tours, and never returned. The film is out of print and it has been tough to find a replacement—a big inconvenience because this film is so well done. I know of few films that so effectively make viewers aware of … Continue reading

Some Mao Era Ethnographic Films

Clearly massive hard drives are becoming like attics—places where forgotten things wait to be rediscovered. Yesterday while talking with a friend about the Oroqen people in China, I vaguely remembered that six or seven years ago a visual anthropologist in China had shared with me an old Communist-era ethnological film about them. I had saved … Continue reading

Midway Conversations: A Neighborhood Documentary

Last Wednesday night, Midway Conversations premiered at the Turf Club. The film was the final project of a collaborative neighborhood-based research project done by the Spring 2012 anthropology senior seminar at Hamline University. The premiere wasn’t without a few last-minute snafus—not least of which was a missing segment in the final copy of the film—but by about 5:45 … Continue reading

“Never Seen Before”: A Senior Documentary Project

The film begins with a bit of disorientation—an institutional building, a cacophonous crowd, a group of men in soldier uniforms. Was that man carrying a giant sword? A woman with striking blue raspberry hair walks past, as the camera weaves through the crowd following a group of three young Hmong women up an escalator to a room … Continue reading


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