HumanDocs explores language, culture issues in U.S. in final spring film offering

By Janel Shoun on 3/4/2011

  
  

Lipscomb University's HumanDocs Film Series, presented by the College of Arts & Sciences, is a social-justice documentary series that aims to create a more just, peaceful and inclusive university and city. Speaking in Tongues on March 30 will bring the final of three free films presented on campus this semester.

The 2010-11 slate of  films has so far explored social justice issues from communities as far away as Latin America and from as near as Tennessee's Appalachain mountains. The series most recently aired the Oscar-winning film Inside Job. The final spring 2011 offering will explore ethnically diverse San Francisco.

Each film is followed by a panel discussion, sometimes including the filmmaker, and these events are all free and open to the public.
 

Speaking in Tongues
Wednesday, March 30
8:30 p.m. in Shamblin Theatre
Sponsored by the College of Arts & Sciences
 
At a time when 31 states have passed “English Only” laws, four pioneering families in San Francisco put their children in public schools where, from the first day of kindergarten, their teachers speak mostly Chinese or Spanish. Speaking in Tongues follows four diverse kids on a journey to become bilingual. This charming story challenges beliefs about what skills Americans need in the 21st century.
 
According to the Speaking in Tongues official Website: “Attitudes toward bilingualism can be a mask for complicated fears that are hard to talk about: the impact of new immigrants, and global competition, to name two hot button issues. But in our diverse country, in our increasingly international world, is knowing English enough?”
 
Speaking in Tongues won the Audience Award for Best Documentary Featureat the San Francisco International Film Festival and was selected as the Best of 2009 by Asia Pacific Arts Magazine.