Freya Schiwy: The Open Invitation. Activist Video, Mexico, and the Politics of Affect.

Wed, Oct 9, 2019, 12:00 pm


While earlier revolutionary filmmaking and more recent video activism share an interest in vesting the audiovisual medium from its predominant social, economic, and ideological inscriptions, they tend to incite different effective and political reactions. “The Open Invitation” seeks to account for a shift in leftist cinematic style and affect, a shift from rage at injustice toward optimism in the face of defeat. Taking the 2006 Oaxaca Commune and the unprecedented coalition among unions, indigenous organizations, anarchists, feminists, independent and community film and video makers, and others as its point of departure, this talk reflects on how activist video invites its viewers to feel and act and how this relation between cinematic image, affect, and the profilmic might be explained politically.

Freya Schiwy is Associate Professor of Media and Cultural Studies at the University of California, Riverside. She is author of Indianizing Film. Decolonization, the Andes and the Question of Technology (Rutgers UP, 2009) and of The Open Invitation. Activist Video, Mexico, and the Politics of Affect (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2019). Together with Byrt Wammack Weber she co-edited Adjusting the Lens. Community and Collaborative Video in Mexico (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2017), a volume that unsettles predominant narratives about “indigenous video” by focusing on diverse vernacular, diasporic, experimental, activist, and community and collaborative videos in indigenous languages in and beyond Mexico. Most recently, she has begun working on a monograph about collaborative video art and activism and the Anthropocene.

This event is free and open to the public. Lunch provided.

216 Burr Hall