Join the WGSS program for a screening of the film And the Rest Is Drag… by Shani Mootoo as part of the annual Women Take the Reel Film Festival. The screening will be followed by a discussion with the filmmaker, visiting distinguished writer Shani Mootoo, who will be in residence at Northeastern the week of March 12- 16. Pizza will be served. A Q&A and discussion, moderated by WGSS Visiting Scholar Krista Miranda, will follow the screenings. For other events related to Mootoo’s residency, please see below.
And the Rest Is Drag…
2009, 32 min., color, Englishd
Directed by: Melisa Brittain, Shani Mootoo, and Danielle Peers
And the Rest is Drag explores gender from the perspective of drag kings who consciously and politically queer their gender, both on and off stage. Using an eclectic mix of performance footage, still photography, and interviews with members of the Alberta Beef Drag King Troupe, the film draws audiences into the sexy, rebellious, and sometimes humorous world of drag kinging. And the Rest is Drag questions how different experiences of race, class, size, sexuality, and ability inform our many-gendered identities, and invites viewers to do the same. Created by three gender-queer filmmakers (including a member of the Alberta Beef Drag King Troupe), this film examines a range of approaches to the performance of masculinity, and the meanings that these performances have for both the kings, and the filmmakers.
Güerita & Prietita
1995, 20 min., color, English
Written & Directed by: Kathy High and Shani Mootoo
Güerita & Prietita, are terms used in Oaxacan parlance to mean foreign white woman and dark skinned woman, respectively… “ita” is a suffix that connotes affection.
A white New York woman (of Scottish descent) and a Canadian woman (of South Asian descent) are the quintessential post-colonial lesbian-videomaker-tourists. Through well considered framing, not-framing and editing choices the two women attempt to make themselves vulnerable to that elusive space between looking and forming an opinion. This assemblage of extended shots and ambient soundtracks of Oaxaca City (Mexico) is foregrounded alongside hints of a budding love affair between güerita and prietita.
These films are being shown as part of the Women Take the Reel Film Festival, a month-long roving film festival celebrating women’s history month. For a calendar of other screenings around Boston, visit http://wgs.mit.edu/women-take-the-reel/. Screenings are free and open to the public.
Artist Bio: SHANI MOOTOO was born in Ireland, grew up in Trinidad and has lived in Canada for close to forty years. She is a visual artist, video maker, and fiction writer. Her paintings have been exhibited in solo and group exhibitions locally and internationally, most notably at the Vancouver Art Gallery, The Queens Museum, NYC, and at the Venice Biennale.
Her videos include “English Lesson”, “Wild Woman in The Woods” and “Her Sweetness Lingers” and have been screened in film and video festivals and art exhibitions locally, and internationally, including at the Museum of Modern Art, NYC.
Mootoo’s novels include Moving Forward Sideways Like a Crab, longlisted for the Scotia Bank Giller Prize, shortlisted for the Lambda Award; Valmiki’s Daughter, longlisted for the Scotia Bank Giller Prize; He Drown She in the Sea, longlisted for the Dublin IMPAC Award, and Cereus Blooms at Night, shortlisted for the Giller Prize, The Chapters First Novel Award, The Ethel Wilson Book Prize, and longlisted for the Man Booker Prize. She is a recipient of the recipient of the K. M. Hunter Artist Award for Literature, a Chalmers Fellowship Award, and the James Duggins Outstanding Mid-Career Novelist Prize.
Mootoo now lives in Southern Ontario. More at shanimootoo.com.
Moderator Bio: Krista Miranda holds a PhD in Performance Studies from New York University where her work culminated in the dissertation “Playing with Your Parts: Dismantling Bodily ‘Wholeness’ Through Queer and Crip Performance,” a study of the concept of “wholeness” and its coded meanings by examining performances of embodiment that remap the body and its meaning, taxonomies, and possibilities. While at Northeastern, she will work to turn her dissertation into a book, framing the project within an exploration of global discourses on “wholeness” and examining the differences between how the body is shaped discursively and how notions of bodily wholeness and fragmentation play out in practice. The book will also address body integrity disorder and concepts of belonging within queer and crip communities, and examines the legislation of “abnormal” bodies in the US. Miranda has held research and teaching positions at NYU and Miami Dade College, Barry University, and Middlebury College. She will be in residence at Northeastern through August 2018.
The screening is also a part of a visiting distinguished writer residency at Northeastern University by Shani Mootoo. Related events are:
Tuesday, March 13, 5:30 – 7:30 pm
An Evening With Shani Mootoo
Mootoo will read from her work. Light refreshments will be served.
Wednesday, March 14, 12:00-2:00 pm
Undergraduate Writing Workshop with Shani Mootoo, Visiting Distinguished Writer
Northeastern Undergraduate students must apply at the link above.