Woke Up Black to Screen at Harold Washington College on February 25
2012 Black Excellence Award-winning film followed by post-screening discussion with director and documentary subjects
Filmmaker and activist Mary F. Morten’s documentary Woke Up Black, winner of the 2012 Black Excellence Award in Documentary Filmmaking from the African American Arts Alliance of Chicago, will screen at Harold Washington College, 30 East Lake Street, Room 103, in downtown Chicago on Monday, February 25, at 3 p.m.
The screening is free and open to the public. Doors open at 2:30 p.m. and the film begins at 3:00 p.m. A postscreening discussion featuring Director/Producer Mary F. Morten, documentary subject Sheldon Smith, and Black Youth Project Principal Investigator Dr. Cathy J. Cohen, whose research inspired the film. To register, please click here. You do not have to be a Harold Washington student or staff member to attend.
Woke Up Black focuses on five Black youth, along with their struggles and triumphs as they start their journey into adulthood. The film places at its center the voices of Black youth – their ideas, attitudes and opinions that
are often overlooked in society at large. As Ace, one of the film’s subjects, says, “The youth do have a voice, but it’s up to us to really speak our voice.”
For two years, Morten and associate producers Keisha Farmer-Smith, Aparna Sharma, and Marisol Ybarra followed five youth from the Chicago area to explore their experiences with navigating the world they live in. The documentary not only tells the personal stories of these five youth but also investigates the complexities of Black youth as a group that are at the center of many socio-political issues, including discrimination, political participation, sex and relationships, music, and media portrayal.
“We’re thrilled to be hosting a screening of Woke Up Black as part of our Black History Month event series at Harold Washington,” said Kennette Crockett, Assistant Professor, Harold Washington College Department of English, Speech and Theatre. “The film illuminates these five young peoples’ life experiences and ambitions, giving us insight into perspectives we would not otherwise see and raising voices we would not otherwise hear. It is deeply relevant to students and staff of all backgrounds across City Colleges.”