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30th annual film festival will explore themes of female empowerment through music

Tuesday, April 1, 2014
30th annual film festival will explore themes of female empowerment through music
Oakland University’s Women and Gender Studies program will host its 30th annual film festival from noon – 5 p.m. on Saturday, April 5 in the Oakland Center Gold Rooms. This year’s event, “Grrrls at the Mic: Power and Protest in Punk and Hip Hop,” will explore themes of female empowerment through music.

The festival is headlined by two documentary films that spotlight women in male-dominated music scenes. “Grrrl Love and Revolution” chronicles the New York City Riot Grrrl movement of the early to mid-1990s. Rooted in a new brand of feminist-inspired punk music, the movement helped raise awareness of issues like rape, domestic abuse, sexuality, racism and female empowerment, and influenced future generations of female music performers. “Say My Name” takes viewers on a cross-country tour of urban culture and musical movement while following the struggles of female lyricists who speak candidly about issues of class, race and gender.

In addition, the festival features a special performance by The Foundation: Detroit Women in Hip Hop. A Detroit-based women’s hip hop collective, the five-member group supports up-and-coming artists by hosting the nation’s only weekly open mic event for women in hip hop.

"We are very excited to not only explore these themes through the films but to also have the added benefit of a live hip hop performance which illustrates much of what the festival is about this year," said Jo Reger, Ph.D., professor of sociology and director of OU’s Women and Gender Studies program.

“We are also pleased to continue the 30-year tradition of bringing cutting-edge films to OU. This year's film festival promises to make us think about relevant and contemporary issues of gender, sex and power, a common theme in all the film festivals."
OU’s Women and Gender Studies film festival is sponsored by the departments of Biological Sciences, Cinema Studies, Communication and Journalism, Counseling, Political Science, Sociology, Anthropology, Social Work and Criminal Justice, History, Philosophy, The Oakland Post, Sociology Club and Critical Sociology. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be provided.

For more information, see the event calendar listing or contact Dr. Reger at (248) 370-2575 or reger@oakland.edu.