Explore Latin America Through Film

By Hilary Broman

Staff Reporter and Photographer

You don’t need to know how to speak Spanish to take the new Latin American Film studies class, said Jean Silesky, class instructor.

The Latin American film class will be offered for the first time in the 2017 spring term and it will fulfill a humanities elective credit, Silesky said.

It is a part of the new Latin American studies associates program, she said, but anybody can take the class.

To register for the class students can find it under LTAM 1111, Silesky said.

The class will be at main campus in Tuesday evenings from 6:00-9:20pm, she said.

The class focuses on themes such as migration, war and conflict, women’s issues, and environmental issues, she said.

Students will watch eight critically acclaimed feature films in class and will also be required to watch films outside of class, she said.

There is not a required textbook for the class, said Silesky.

“The movies are our text,” she said.

The class includes films from Brazil, Argentina, Mexico, Paraguay and more, she said.

The class is about encouraging students to look at the world from a different perspective, Silesky said.

“Foreign films allow us to travel vicariously,” she said, “I just want to open students up to see the world.”

Film in Latin America can be used as a learning tool rather than just entertainment, Silesky said,

And it can be intense and in your face.

“When we go elsewhere we see that there are other ways to live and to be and yet everyone is the same in the sense that everyone wants to be happy and to have a family; these things are a part of the human experience,” she said.

Silesky encourages students to study abroad both through film and in person, she said.

She spent time studying in Costa Rica when she was in school and it was an eye-opening experience, she said.

Students often think that studying abroad is for people with money but there are so many opportunities to be able to go abroad, she said, you just have to seek them out.

Overall, Silesky wants to promote global perspective and outlook, she said.

“It can be scary,” she said “but it can also be very eye opening.”


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