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Public events look at memory, countermemory

October 27, 2011

The research symposium “Memory & Countermemory; Memorialization of an Open Future,” begins with public two public events.

From 2 to 5 p.m., Oct. 31, there will be two films and a discussion in West Hall room 135 on ASU’s Tempe campus.

Shown will be “The Conscience of Nhem Em” (2008) and “A Film Unfinished” (2010). Martin Matuštík will lead a discussion of the films.

“The Conscience of Nhem Em” deals with a survivor-photographer from Tuol Sleng Prison in Cambodia under the Khmer Rouge, while the second is about the Nazi propaganda film made in the Warsaw Ghetto.

On Nov. 4, the film “Estamira” (2004) will be shown from 4-6:30 p.m. in The Kiva on ASU’s West campus. Gabriele M. Schwab will lead a discussion. The film was made by Marcos Prado, who said of it, “I met Estamira while developing a photo documentary essay at a garbage dump in Rio de Janeiro, where she was working and living. I approached her asking if I could take her portrait. She consented and told me she had lots of ‘things’ to say to me: ‘my mission is to reveal and reclaim the truth’; ‘ you are common, I am not.’”

A public session also will take place Nov. 7, when Cathy Caruth of Cornell University delivers the keynote address, “Literature in the Ashes of History,” at 8 p.m. in University Center Building, La Sala, at ASU’s West campus.

From 5:30-9 p.m., Nov. 8, in The Kiva at ASU’s West campus. That will include a screening of the film “Jubanos” and a one-hour dramatic reading of the play “Parted Waters” by Robert Benjamin. Performing will be members of the Arizona Jewish Theatre Company. Monica Casper will lead an audience discussion following the reading.

The concluding event will be a reading by Simon J. Ortiz and Gabriele M. Schwab from their unpublished book, “Children of Fire, Children of Water,” at 5 p.m., Nov. 9, in The Kiva at the West campus. Moderator will be Native American writer Leslie Marmon Silko.

For a complete conference schedule, including other public sessions, go to The public events are free, but an R.S.V.P. is requested by clicking on RSVP form on the website.