Interweaving poetry, painting, photography, music and sculpture, this feature documentary is an innovative look at the lives and work of Canadian men and women artists of Italian origin. Broaching issues of identity and culture, the film explores the relationship between the immigrant experience and the creative process.
This drama portrays an immigrant family and the mingled feelings of hope and despair that characterize their life in a strange land. An Italian wife joins her husband in a large Canadian city. After two years in Canada the husband feels his dream of a better life is close to realization, but his wife feels that differences of language and custom are insurmountable. How such feelings are dispelled by simple gestures of friendship from Canadian-born neighbours gives a heartening conclusion to the film.
The nation, the country, where do we belong in it? In this film through conversation and poetry two poets meet for the telling and the listening. Adrienne Rich is a distinguished American feminist poet, and author of numerous books of prose, poetry, essays and speeches. Dionne Brand is a Trinidadian-Canadian femininst poet, writer and filmmaker. Incisive and inquisitive, the two women meet to discuss the world as they each see it. Claiming any subject, they talk about events as they see them, analytic, contemplative, honest and open ended. Topics include political issues, feminism, racism and lesbianism, among others. The viewer is invited into the exchange by the familiar images of two women talking intimately around a kitchen table, in corridors, or casually outdoors in the United States, Tobago and Canada. Shot in black and white and in colour, the conversation takes us over the territories of their poetry.
In this short film, internationally acclaimed author Margaret Laurence passionately addresses several issues related to peace: the social responsibility of the writer; language usage and reality; jargon and "newspeak"; imagination, meaning and understanding; the nuclear threat; world leadership; the role of empathy in communication; the distinctions between fiction and didactic writing; and the power of "ordinary" people to influence events. The film's scope makes this an excellent discussion starter in diverse subject areas.
In this animated short, a young girl and her father move from China to Canada, bringing only their Chinese violin along for the journey. As they face the challenge of starting fresh in a new place, the music of the violin connects them to the life they left behind and guides the girl towards a musical future.
Part of the Talespinners collection, which uses vibrant animation to bring popular children’s stories from a wide range of cultural communities to the screen.
This feature documentary studies the different faces of Montreal’s Greek community in 1969. Instead of giving voice to the businessmen and well-integrated few, the film highlights the cultural and economic problems encountered by new immigrants and their families.
This short film encapsulates the life of P.K. Page, a Canadian woman who has reached international stature as both a painter and a poet. Through an exploration of her life and art, the film shows how her powerful works have extended beyond their inherent confines into the realms of anthropology and ecology.
In Margaret Atwood: Once in August, filmmaker Michael Rubbo attempts to discover what shapes the celebrated writer's fiction and what motivates her characters. As one of Canada's most distinguished poets and novelists, Atwood is also one of this country's most elusive literary figures.
This feature documentary offers an intimate glimpse of three respected yet controversial Quebec writers. Now recognized at home and abroad, Louky Bersianik, Jovette Marchessault and Nicole Brossard have contributed greatly to the creation of a distinctive women’s literature. Confirming that fresh approaches to literature are still possible, they have helped to heighten awareness of the politics of language. Excerpts from their works vividly convey each woman’s style, concerns and rhythms. They examine personal and global issues from a feminist perspective: human relationships, work, justice, poverty, loneliness, women’s spirituality, and the future.
This documentary celebrates the vibrant culture and tenacious struggle of the Canadian Gypsy and introduces a new generation of Roma who claim their roots with pride. They call themselves by their rightful name, the Roma. Almost 80,000 call Canada home. Meet Julia Lovell, a passionate defender of Roma human rights, whose father is slowly gaining the confidence to reveal his heritage; and Karen Gray Boothroyd, a flamenco dancer just beginning to reclaim her Gypsy roots.
Ages 14 to 17
Arts Education - Art
Diversity - Identity
Health/Personal Development - Careers & Education
Define immigration /emigration. Review history of settlement and immigration patterns in Canada. How has this history shaped our culture? What was happening in countries where people were leaving to come here? What role does art play in forming identity? Discuss art as a means to communicate experience and give meaning to struggle. Study various artworks by immigrant Canadians to reinforce this theme.