worldcanvass

Joan Kjaer and her guests closed the 2015 WorldCanvass season on Tuesday, May 5 with a fascinating look at the transformational power of cinema and its unique ability to inspire, provoke, and challenge preconceptions. WorldCanvass guests discussed how cultures are explored and projected through film and shared their own international experiences that have either reinforced or contradicted cinematic representations. Catch the whole show in audio and video form in this ReCap.

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Joan Kjaer and her guest panelists kicked off the 2015 Provost's Global Forum with a WorldCanvass program on the conference's topic, the Arab Spring in a global context, on April 28, at FilmScene in downtown Iowa City. Below is a recap of the event with access to see and hear the full program.

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Through the silver screen, we are able to connect with stories, places and faces from home and around the world. As filmmaker Martin Scorsese says, “Movies touch our hearts and awaken our vision, and change the way we see things. They take us to other places, they open doors and minds.” At FilmScene, we couldn’t agree more with Scorsese’s sentiment, which speaks to the heart of everything we do as a nonprofit film arts organization.

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On May 13, President Barack Obama will welcome the rulers of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates to the White House. According to the White House, the "gathering will be an opportunity for the leaders to discuss ways to enhance their partnership and deepen security cooperation." The unusual meeting comes at a critical moment in the history of these countries and members of the Arab League for a number of reasons. Iowa communities will be able to contextualize these transformations taking place in Arab countries this coming week during the 2015 Provost's Global Forum.

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The final WorldCanvass of the 2014-2015 season will focus on film as an opening to unknown cultures, expanded worldviews, and deeply personal adventures. Host Joan Kjaer and her guests will take a close look at the transformational power of cinema and its unique ability to inspire, provoke, and challenge preconceptions. In this program called “Reel to Real,” they’ll also share personal stories of growth and discovery through study and teaching abroad. WorldCanvass, which is free and open to the public, takes place on May 5 from 5-6:30 p.m., at FilmScene, 118 East College Street, Iowa City.

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A glance at a timeline of events in the Arab world since the December 2010 anti-government demonstrations in Tunisia that triggered what we now know as the Arab Spring reveals a swift and previously unthinkable resetting of the geo-political map of the Middle East. What followed those heady early days has been a toppling of dictatorships, emboldened public action, a sharpening of divisions within national and religious groups, humanitarian crises of alarming proportions, and challenges to major world powers unlike anything in recent memory. Internationally-renowned scholars on the Middle East and Arab world will join host Joan Kjaer when WorldCanvass explores “The Arab Spring in a Global Context.” This is the first event of the 2015 Provost’s Global Forum, and the public is invited to attend the free program at 5 p.m., April 28, at FilmScene in Iowa City.

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As part of a special symposium by the Obermann Center for Advanced Studies, Joan Kjaer and her WorldCanvass guests explored the topic of "Energy Cultures and the Age of the Anthropocene" on March 3, 2015 at FilmScene in Iowa City. The program was followed by a free screening of the documentary, “The Great Invisible,” about the social and environmental effects of the Deepwater/Horizon/Macondo disaster and oil spill in 2010.

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We are now living in the “Anthropocene” (pronounced AN-thruh-puh-seen), the literal definition of which is the “New Age (cene) of Humans (anthropos).” For many people, the notion that we are living in the age of humans might be unremarkably self-evident. But the concept of the Anthropocene challenges us to consider how humans have become the dominant agent of change on Earth. The upcoming Obermann Humanities Symposium at the University of Iowa, March 5-7, “Energy Cultures in the Age of the Anthropocene,” will showcase innovative thinking about how to conceptualize and deal with the large-scale human alterations of environments and ecosystems that have given a new name to the age in which we live.

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The March 3 WorldCanvass program will be part of a three-day interdisciplinary Obermann Center symposium on the Anthropocene which will examine how humans have shaped our present energy culture and what other energy cultures are possible. Four keynote speakers will tackle this question from very different angles.

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On February 3, 2015, Joan Kjaer and her WorldCanvass guests discussed the the complicated and controversial issues surrounding the legality and use of tobacco and marijuana with a special focus on the tension between personal liberty and the public good. This is a "ReCap" of the event with access to see and hear the full program.

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