Film Screening & Discussion: Chuck Norris vs. Communism

Monday, April 4, 2016, 6:00 pm
East Gallery, Buell Hall (Maison Française)

Please join the Harriman Institute, the Romanian Cultural Institute in New York, the East Central European Center, and the Columbia University Central and Eastern European Club (CUCEE) for a screening of the documentary film Chuck Norris vs. Communism, followed by a discussion with Irina Margareta Nistor, Romanian translator and film critic, and the subject of the documentary.

The film:

A documentary about the magic of film and the power it has to change lives. In 1980’s Romania, thousands of Western films smashed through the Iron Curtain, opening a window into the free world for those who dared to look. A black-market VHS racketeer and a courageous female translator brought the magic of film to the people and sparked a revolution.

Synopsis:

Communist Romania -1980s.

Culturally isolated, ideologically censored; all images of life outside the Iron Curtain are cut off and TV is reduced to a couple of hours of propaganda bulletins each day. From the drab concrete housing blocks to the food ration queues, an overwhelming fear of state surveillance had prevented the people from stepping out of line. But there was one window into the free world available to anyone who dared to look.

In the mid-1980s, thousands of Hollywood films were smuggled into the country through a well-oiled operation that swelled and swelled until it reached millions across Romania. The films were dubbed by one courageous female translator whose distinct voice captivated the whole nation and became a symbol of freedom.

The fearless stories of action heroes like Chuck Norris and Jean-Claude Van Damme captured every child’s imagination, but it was the lavish settings and backdrops that mesmerized this unique audience. For the first time people saw what had been denied to them: supermarkets stacked full of food, the trappings of wealth, the latest fashions, super cars, and most of all, freedom.

Runtime: 80 minutes. In Romanian with English subtitles.

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A Tale of Two Polands? – Discussing Polish Politics Before and After the 2015 Elections

Friday, February 26, 12PM – 1:30PM
International Affairs Building, Room 1219, Columbia University
Professor Wojtek Michnik will give a talk about continuity and change in Poland in regard to both domestic and foreign policies. He will use the context of 2015 parliamentary elections and its aftermath as a departure point for a broader discussion on Poland’s transformation, as well as its growing pains after the end of the Cold War.

 

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Panel Discussion: Refugee Crisis in Europe

Panel Discussion:

Perspectives on the European Refugee Crisis

WednesdayNovember 46:30 pm – 8:30 pm

International Affairs Building, Room 1219, Columbia University

The CU Central and Eastern European Club and East Central European Center are proud to host the panel discussion Perspectives on the European Refugee Crisis on Wednesday, November 4 from 6:30 to 8:30 pm. In this discussion we hope to shed light on the way in which populations view the incoming waves of refugees and how their attitudes have affected government policy. At the same time, we hope to explore how governments attempt to shape the responses of their populations to these newcomers.

Discussion featuring:

Csaba Békés, Istvan Deak Visiting Professor of History, Columbia University

Ann Cooper, CBS Professor of Professional Practice in International Journalism, Columbia University

Christine Landfried, Professor of European and Mediterranean Studies, NYU

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Bestsellers of Polish Prose: Literature and Film

We would like to invite you to take the following course offered during this semester by the Department of Slavic Languages at Columbia University:

Fall 2015; Code: CLPLG4042
Instr.: Anna Frajlich-Zajac
Wed. 4:10-6:00, Hamilton Hall 406

Course description: During the inter-war period (1918-1939), Polish narrative prose experienced its most innovative and invigorating phase. The novels we will read and discuss introduce a diversity of techniques and topics relevant today as ever, such as the “lost generation,” economic depression, homosexuality, identity and displacement. Students will examine the narrative technique of Gombrowicz and Schulz whose postmodern narratives found their ways into international curricula.

We will view movies based on many of these novels made by prominent directors.
The course will give students in the departments of Slavic Languages, Comparative Lit., and Area Studies an opportunity to fulfill requirements for their respective concentrations. Novels on the reading list have been translated into foreign languages, including English, Russian, French, German directors. and Czech.

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6 Minutes: Academic Show & Tell

6 Minutes Flyer 1AN updatedSign up for this event of facebook.

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Film Screening – Saved by Deportation: An Unknown Odyssey of Polish Jews


Tuesday, April 30, 7:30 pm – 10:15 pm

702 Hamilton, Columbia University

Deportacja_Poster1.cdrPlease join Columbia University Central and Eastern European (CUCEE) Club for the screening of Saved by Deportation: An Unknown Odyssey of Polish Jews, an award-winning documentary film by Polish filmmakers Slawomir Grunberg and Robert Podgursky. The film will be presented by Columbia Senior Lecturer Anna Frajlich who will also moderate a post-screening discussion panel. During the discussion, the filmmakers will be joined by Alan Timberklake, Director of East Central European Center, Columbia University.

About the film:
In 1940, a year before the Nazis started deporting Jews to death camps, Joseph Stalin ordered the deportation of approximately 200,000 Polish Jews from Russian-occupied Eastern Poland to forced labor settlements in the Soviet interior. As cruel as Stalin’s deportations were, ultimately they largely saved Jewish lives, for the deportees constituted the overwhelming majority of Polish Jews who escaped the Nazi Holocaust. Saved by Deportation not only tells this story, but it re-traces the path Asher and Shyfra Scharf traveled more than 60 years ago from Poland to Siberia to the former Soviet states of Tajikistan and Uzbekistan in Central Asia. It is in those largely Muslim societies, in the cities of Kuhjand, Jeezax and Samarkand, that the film demonstrates a remarkable spirit as the Scharfs are welcomed by the locals who recall fondly the sojourn of Polish refugees in their midst. This little-known story of survival is both a harrowing adventure and an affirmation of human goodness during a time of great darkness.

Awards:
Washington Jewish Film Festival: The Audience Award for ‘the Best Documentary’
Jewish Film Festival, Warsaw, Poland: ‘The Best Presentation of Contemporary Jewish Life,’ An Award at 5th ‘Jewish Motifs’

Polish food will be served. The screening is sponsored by the Harriman Institute, and the East Central European Center at Columbia University.

The screening is free and open to the public. Due to the limited space please RSVP to Anna Nejedla at an2559@columbia.edu by Sunday, April 26.

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Film Screening: The Double Life of Veronique

Thursday, March 5, 2015 – 8:00 pm
Hamilton 401, Columbia University

Take a break from midterms and join Columbia University Central and Eastern European (CUCEE) Club for the screening of The Double Life of Veronique, a 1991 French and Polish-language drama film directed by Krzysztof Kieslowski. Veronique (Irene Jacob) is a beautiful young French woman who aspires to be a renowned singer; Weronika (also Jacob) lives in Poland, has a similar career goal and looks identical to Veronique, though the two are not related. The film follows both women as they contend with the ups and downs of their individual lives, with Veronique embarking on an unusual romance with Alexandre Fabbri (Philippe Volter), a puppeteer who may be able to help her with her existential issues.

Pizza will be served! The screening is free and open to the public.

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Ukraine crisis prompts Yara Arts Group to present “Hitting Bedrock” @ La MaMa

Hitting Bedrock
February 20, 2015 – March 08, 2015
Thursdays – Saturdays at 7:30pm / Sundays at 2pm
First Floor Theatre

HITTING BEDROCK is based on “then and now” interviews over the past two years with young adults who initially tell of their dreams for a new life in Donetsk and now describe either the rigors of refugee life in communities they have fled to or the hardships of life in Donetsk (if they have remained). The playscript combines their interviews with poetry and monologues by Serhiy Zhadan, translated into English.

10 $10 tickets will be made available for each performance on a first-serve, first-come basis. We hope that you can take advantage of this discount opportunity.

BUY TICKETS HERE.

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Conversation with… Dorota Dakowska

Please join us for an informal lunch Conversation with Dorota Dakowska, a leading expert on Central and Eastern European Politics and the author of “Le pouvoir des fondations.”

February 25th, 2015
12 (noon)– 1:30pm
International Affairs Building
Room 1219

Topic: The Contentious Europeans – Euroscepticism revisited

Contemporary contestation of European integration takes various forms. Is Euroscepticism a useful tool to analyze heterogeneous forms of criticism expressed individually and collectively in Western and Eastern Europe? Can we classify citizens’ attitudes as being for or against the EU? How do political party leaders refer to European integration? Our conversation will address these questions as well as more general social and political uses of Europe.

Dakowska PhotoDorota Dakowska is Assistant Professor in Political Science at the University of Strasbourg (Sciences Po). She has published a book on the German political foundations’ and their involvement in the Central and Eastern European transitions, (Le pouvoir des fondations. Des acteurs de la politique étrangère allemande, Presses Universitaires de Rennes, 2014) as well as several articles in journals and chapters in edited volumes on the EU Eastern Enlargement, the German foreign policy and its actors as well as the transnational party cooperation. The event is organized by East Central European Center, and Columbia University Central and Eastern European (CUCEE) Club.

Lunch will be served. We are looking forward to seeing you there – please, RSVP here, as spots are limited!

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The Ukraine Conflict and Wartime Gender Violence

World Federation of Ukrainian Women’s Organizations and Ukrainian National Women’s League of America invite you to a discussion of The Ukraine Conflict and Wartime Gender Violence:

Saturday December 6, 2014 at 5pm
UNWLA Headquarters
203 Second Avenue, 4th Floor, NY

– “Women taking on, suffering from, and responding to the conflict in Ukraine,” introduction by Dr. Martha Kichorowska Kebalo, WFUWO Main Rep to UN/ECOSOC

– “A Fiery EuroMaidan Ignites a Feminist Voice” by Dr. Mar’iana Rubchak, editor of anthologies “Mapping Difference: The Many Faces of Women in Ukraine” and of the forthcoming: “New Imaginaries: Youthful Reinvention of Ukraine’s Cultural Paradigm”

– “The Crimean Tatars Right to Self-Determination as Indigenous Peoples within the territorial integrity of Ukraine is the key to regaining Crimea” by Ayla Bakkalli, USA Representative of the Indigenous Crimean Tatar Mejlis, and Advisor on Indigenous Matters to the Permanent Mission of Ukraine to the United Nations

– “The UNWLA’s War Victim’s Fund” by Roksolana Misilo, UNWLA Vice President of Public Relations

– Concluding remarks: Dr. Martha Kichorowska Kebalo

Admission: $5. Please join us for a reception following the panel.
RSVP to marta.burachok@gmail.com
This event engages with the “16 days of activism against gender violence,” an international campaign joined by Ukraine in 2000. The campaign, initiated by the Center for Women’s Global Leadership at Rutgers University in 1991, is held annually, from November 25th thru December 10th (Human Rights Day). Proceeds from this event will be allocated to the UNWLA War Victims Fund.

More info to be found at:
Web: www.WFUWO.org
Facebook: WFUWO at the UN
Twitter: #WFUWO

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