What Is Documentary Futurism, and Why Do We Need It?

Cinema Politica recently put out a call for proposals to launch a new genre: documentary futurism, or speculative documentary. It was extremely difficult to put together a proposal for a genre that for the most part doesn't yet exist, but what I ultimately decided was that this genre should be more about process than any kind of structure, aesthetics, or style (i.e., the opposite of von Trier's self-indulgent "dogma" films).< I'm thinking now about continuing to work on the writing that I started for the grant proposal, especially in light of Reina Gosset's piece in Teen Vogue today: (more…)


What Is White Supremacy? Who Are White Supremacists?

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/kamichisholm/white-skin-white-masks The gathering of right-wing, white nationalist extremists in Charlottesville this month – at which violent attendees murdered Heather Heyer, attacked Deandre Harris, and more – has unsurprisingly garnered international attention and condemnation… including from right-wing politicians such as Mitt Romney, Paul Ryan, and Arnold Schwartzenegger. This leaves me with a burning question: in a moment when prominent white nationalist figures feel comfortable, and even compelled to, publicly condemn other white nationalists, what exactly is the role of white nationalist extremism, such as that found in neo-Nazis groups, the KKK, and new online communities, in maintaining white supremacy in the colonized nations of the US and Canada? First and foremost, it is crucial to observe that white supremacy is not synonymous with right-wing, white nationalist organizing or identities. Examining news reports and other accounts of the wake of Charlottesville, it’s commonplace to find the descriptor of “white supremacists” used to refer to the “Unite the Right” attendees. That is not inaccurate, of course. The problem, however, is the tendency in US and Canadian society – particularly among white settlers – to only associate the concept of white supremacy with such groups and individuals. (more…)

TV & Film Analysis

The Saviors of American Crime

The new season of the television show American Crime is all about indulging North American fantasies about trafficking. At first glance, the show appears to be taking up the radical project of exploring the roles of border imperialism and the criminalization of migration on the coercive labor conditions experienced by farm workers in the US. If this was the entire thrust of the show, it's possible something interesting could come of it. However, the story lines centering the farm owners and laborers (that after two episodes, as of this writing, are bizarrely bifurcated by a questionable desire to "show both sides of the story" of farm labor exploitation) are interwoven with, and thus seemed designed to legitimize, hysterical fantasies of sex trafficking of white women and girls. (more…)