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Elizabethtown College continues Diversity Film Festival

'Hoop Dreams,' 'The Defiant Ones,' 'The Children's Hour,' 'South Pacific' address various forms of intolerance, exploration

the children's hourThe Diversity Film Festival, hosted by the Elizabethtown College Academic Advising Office, continues this winter. The classic film festival features movies that were among the first to deal with issues of race, gender, immigration and socio-economic stratification.

Free, open to the public and closed captioned, the films will be shown on select Monday evenings throughout the winter in Gibble Auditorium in the Masters Center for Science, Mathematics, and Engineering. Elizabethtown College faculty members will lead discussion groups to explore the key messages of each film.

"Some of the films are not historic but are considered classic based on the quality with which they addressed issues of diversity," said Jean-Paul Benowitz, assistant director of academic advising and coordinator of the film series.

Opening the series is "Hoop Dreams," at 6:30 p.m. Monday, Jan. 23, with a visit by Arthur Agee, one of the subjects of the 1994 film. "Hoop Dreams" explores the journey of two African-American teenagers recruited to play basketball at St. Joseph High School, a predominantly white school with an outstanding basketball program. The film will be discussed by Jesse Waters, visiting assistant professor of English and director of Bowers Writers House, and Dr. Heather Kanenberg, assistant professor of Social Work. All diversity film series movies are close captioned.

The 1958 film "The Defiant Ones," which follows two escaped prisoners – an African-American and a white racist from the deep American South – as they escape from prison shackled to one another, will be shown at 7 p.m. Monday, Feb. 6. The film includes discussion by Dr. Michael Swanson, associate professor of Theater and coordinator of Theater and Dance at Elizabethtown College.

The offering for March is "The Children's Hour." This 1961 film, shown at 7 p.m. Monday, March 26, includes discussion by Dr. Sylvester Williams, associate professor of Business Law. "The Children's Hour," stars Shirley MacLaine and Audrey Hepburn as former college classmates who open a private school for girls. One of their students, exacting revenge for being punished for telling a lie, concocts a story about a lesbian relationship between the teachers and destroys their reputations.

Bringing the series to a close is the classic 1958 film "South Pacific," starring Mitzi Gaynor. The musical romance, shown at 7 p.m. Monday, April 16, explores bigotry and love during wartime. Diane Elliott, assistant professor of Social Work at Elizabethtown College and director of Diversity, and Sarah Daughtrey, assistant professor of Music will discuss the film.

Contact: Jean-Paul Benowitz, assistant director of Academic Advising, at 717-361-1110 or benowitzj@etown.edu.

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