Week 10: Rik Scarce


Guest speaker: Dr. Rik Scarce, Skidmore College

Sustaining this Place
“Sustainability” is a popular concept, but what does it look like in practice?  From Mount Marcy to Manhattan–all along the length of the Hudson River region–sustainability entrepreneurs are pursuing new approaches to farming, creating community, greening business, land preservation, and more.  Along the way, they are re-envisioning–socially constructing–the Hudson region’s landscape as a sustainability incubator.  Rik Scarce will share a rough cut of Sustaining this Place and will discuss documentary making from a sociological perspective.

Week 9: Filmmaker Jules Rosskam

This week in class, we will have filmmaker Jules Rosskam join us to screen his documentary Against A Trans Narrative. 

Trans filmmaker Jules Rosskam’s against a trans narrative is a provocative and personal
experimental documentary investigating dominant constructions of trans-masculine identity, gender, and the nature of community.

By sensitively framing the film through his own personal journey within the trans-masculine community, Rosskam creates an electric and original investigation into gender politics and social self-identity.

Blending fiction, nonfiction, and experimental film genres, against a trans narrative employs a gender-busting combination of intimate diary footage, stylized dramatic scenes, spoken word performance, faux audition tapes, and roundtable interview footage to explore and initiate a dialogue between feminists, queers, and transfolk about the way we construct personal and historical narratives. Careful attention is paid to the ways generation, race, class, and culture impact our understandings of gender.

against a trans narrative asks a series of provocative questions:

What does it mean to be trans?
Is there an idealized perception of trans-masculine identity?
What is the diversity of the trans-masculine experience?
Is there an “idealized” community narrative?

Certain to spark lively community dialogue, this powerfully emotional film appeals to anyone
who has ever struggled to reconcile their identity with the communities they belong to.

For more info, visit the against a trans narrative website