March 17, 2011

Cuban filmmaker to screen, discuss works

by Pete Rosenbery

CARBONDALE, Ill. -- A filmmaker and director with an award-winning Cuban community media project will screen his documentaries next week at Southern Illinois University Carbondale.

Carlos Rodriguez, a filmmaker and director with Cuba’s TV Serrana, will also discuss the organization’s work on Friday, March 25, in the Kleinau Theatre on the second floor of the University’s Communication Building. The event is from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Admission is free and the public is welcome.

The presentation includes a selection of TV Serrana’s productions to provide a historical survey of the organization’s work, according to SIUC’s Global Media Research Center, which is among the event sponsors. The videos include English subtitles.

Alexandra Halkin, founder of the Cuba Media Project, will be with Rodriguez. She is a former Guggenheim and Fulbright Fellow and documentary filmmaker “with more than 20 years experience working with indigenous and campesino communities in the Americas,” according to the Global Media Research Center.

Deborah Tudor, associate dean in the College of Mass Communication and Media Arts, is pleased that students and the community have an opportunity to see TV Serrana’s work. Founded in 1993, TV Serrano is in San Pablo de Yao, in the Sierra Maestra Mountains in Granma province.

TV Serrano trains young people in video production so they can tell stories of their community and have a voice in the national media scene, Tudor said.

“One of the elements in our college mission is using media for social justice,” Tudor said. “This is an opportunity for people to see the type of work they are doing and discuss the way they are creating stories about the community.”

This event gives students an opportunity to view media through a global perspective, Tudor said. Tudor said that she and GMRC’s Laura Germann have been working on this event since last fall to ensure Halkin and Rodriguez can attend.

“One of the things the Global Media Research Center is so good at is bringing these scholars, artists and media activists to provide another look at global media,” Tudor said.

Established in 2004, the Global Media Research Center’s mission includes assembling a core group of faculty, graduate and undergraduate students to research global media issues, establish national and international partnerships to promote research and play host to visiting scholars and artists as it seeks to develop new courses addressing global media issues.

The Global Media Research Center is within the College of Mass Communication and Media Arts.

The Americas Media Initiative, Cuba Media Project, Fundación Ludwig de Cuba, and the Ford Foundation are also event sponsors.

For more information, visit the Global Media Research Center’s website at or contact Germann at 618/453-6876, or by email at