Faculty Work

Below is a sample of recent faculty work.

The long history of racism in Ferguson, Missouri, frames Where the Pavement Ends, an experimental documentary by Tufts filmmakers Khary Jones and Jane Gillooly. The death of Michael Brown, shot by a Ferguson, Missouri police officer in 2014, was national news after protests erupted there. But the history of Ferguson, a formerly whites-only "sundown town," and the neighboring black town of Kinloch, now semi-abandoned, is not well known. Incorporating reflections of residents of Kinloch and Ferguson (including Gillooly, who grew up in Ferguson), this film explores the relationship between these two towns. Beginning with a 1960s roadblock that divided then-white Ferguson from black Kinloch, the film depicts a micro-history of race relations in America.

Natalie Minik's piece, "Palmetto," a landscape-driven single-channel video piece, considers the tourist community of Myrtle Beach, SC. A Southerner herself, she is interested in how the region still visually nods to a painful and shameful past, often by commodifying and celebrating it. Using Myrtle Beach as her subject, she created a work that considers how we cover up and glorify our scars at once, tracing the distortion of the region’s landscape and history to a place where painful recognition of reality and uncanny alienation from reality coexist in the same space.

In Sari, LaWhore Vagistan, everyone's favorite diasporic drag aunty, mishears Justin Bieber's "Sorry," and decides to sing the song with her own lyrics. Touching on a variety of issues in South Asian cultural representation including cultural appropriation and skin lightening, she celebrates style, fashion, and beauty. Kareem Khubchandani is the Mellon Bridge Assistant Professor in the Dept. of Drama & Dance and the Program in Women’s, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at Tufts University, teaching at the intersection of performance studies and queer studies.

Produced last year by Five Sisters Productions with Jennifer Burton’s Producing for Film class at Tufts, Half the History: Margaret Lothrop and the Wayside was shot at the Wayside in Concord, the historic home of writers including Louisa May Alcott, Nathaniel Hawthorne, and Harriett Lothrop.

The Wayside is a short film directed by Film and Media Studies professor Jennifer Burton with help from students in her Advanced Production Seminar. It is part of a larger project titled Half the History which explores the under-told stories of American women through short films, curated content, and educational outreach.

Ascendants is a multi-format science fiction endeavor created by Don Schechter that includes the short film series The Ascendants Anthology, a pilot for a television series, and an upcoming novel. Don Schechter is a Part-Time Professor of the Practice in the Film and Media Studies Program at Tufts teaching courses including Film and Media Production I and II. He has also taught Making Movies, Producing Films for Social Change, and The History of Documentary for the Experimental College. Don is the owner of Charles River Media Group and the Creator of Ascendants.