16 March 2015

FOCUS: Ferguson & the St. Louis Metro Region

We will be showing the film "Spanish Lake" on Tuesday, March 17 at 7:30 PM in Steinberg Auditorium, Sam Fox School, Washington University in St. Louis.

                   "HOW FERGUSON BECAME FERGUSON."
                                –– Village Voice

The screening is free and open to the public. We will be providing complimentary popcorn and candy. The screening is the first in a series of events addressing current issues of concern in north St. Louis city and county.

Like Ferguson, Spanish Lake is a community in north St. Louis County which has undergone rapid racial, economic and demographic change in recent decades. The forces driving the societal changes in Spanish Lake parallel many of those in Ferguson. The most significant between them: Ferguson is incorporated as an independent municipality while Spanish Lake remains a part of unincorporated St. Louis County.

The film makes clear the important financial, governmental and policy factors driving these rapid changes.

One of the films greatest strengths is that we get to hear from individuals on the ground who made different decisions which resulted in the changes we see in the community. We hear people speaking from various viewpoints: White residents who remained or fled, new Black residents, Realtors, landlords and other community stakeholders. The Spanish Lake's history, intersection with the City of St. Louis, Federal and local housing policies along with other social and economic forces are dramatically and poignantly portrayed.

For a period of time following Michael Brown's shooting, St. Louis area theaters withdrew the film from distribution for fear that it might increase anger and frustration in the local community. In this sense, the film was censored from its planned local distribution.

You can find the Facebook event page here.

Please feel free to share this invitation to others who might be interested in attending.

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