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Community Cinema with WKAR in mid-MichiganMonthly film screenings from September through June at a range of venues in our community, from libraries to arts centers to college campuses. Community Cinema screening events often include panel discussions with leading community-based organizations and special guest speakers, and connect to local resources and programming designed to help people learn more and get more involved.Community Cinema is a national community engagement program of the Independent Television Service (ITVS) and Independent Lens, in partnership with PBS and WKAR Public Media from Michigan State University. For more on this national project, visit communitycinema.orgFollow this page for updates on Community Cinema with WKAR in mid-Michigan.

'Half the Sky' - Community Cinema Kicks off with Full House

More than 80 people attended WKAR's first Community Cinema event held on Thursday, September 27, at WKAR. The topic of the first discussion was Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide.

Guests saw a preview from the show and then listened to a panel that included Betty Okwako, Amy Jamison and Lynn Paine. They discussed issues presented in the documentary and the relevance of the program to viewers. The discussion was moderated by Judy Karandjeff, vice president of advocacy for the Michigan League of Women Voters and former director of the Michigan Women’s Commission.

Paine is a professor of teacher education and an adjunct professor of sociology and women’s studies within Michigan State University’s Department of Education. Jamison is assistant director of the University’s Center for Gender in Global Context. Okwako teaches in the College of Education. Her research focuses on the educational experiences of African immigrant girls in the U.S. schools.

After the discussion and Question/Answer period, many guests made "commitments" to continue exploring topics from the program and extending the conversation in their workplace or at other events in their lives.

The Next Community Cinema

WKAR's next Community Cinema event will be featuring "As Goes Janesville," a documentary looking at the struggles those living in Janesville, Wisconsin faced when their auto plant closed. The event will take place October 18 at a place to be announced. Watch WKAR.org or WKAR's Facebook page to reserve seats for this event.

“WKAR’s Community Cinema is a groundbreaking public education and civic engagement initiative featuring free monthly screenings of films from the PBS series, ‘Independent Lens,’” said Susi Elkins, WKAR-TV station manager. “Every month between September and May, WKAR will bring together leading mid-Michigan organizations, MSU faculty and students and community members to learn, discuss and get involved in today’s critical social issues.”

WKAR’s partners for the Community Cinema series are MSU’s Women’s Resoruce Center and MSU Center for Gender in Global Context.

On TV:

“Half the Sky: Turning Oppression into Opportunity for Women Worldwide” is based on the highly acclaimed book by New York Times journalists Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn. The four-hour documentary will be broadcast over two nights on WKAR-TV, Oct. 1 and 2, at 9 p.m.

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