Stage & Screen

Total Immersion

Judy Hoffman’s ‘experimental and undefinable’ filmmaking kicks off Cinema 53’s second series

Ronit Bezalel

As the crowd trickled into the movie theater, Britney Spears played on the big screen. The footage, desaturated and shaky, cut between shots of Spears beaming and performing on stage and shots of her anxiously calling someone on her phone. But as the theater filled, the footage cut to an uncomfortably close still of Spears standing worried backstage while concertgoers’ cheers played in the background. What at first appeared to be a glitch quickly revealed itself to be an intentional choice made by the filmmaker—one that evoked an unsettling sadness for Spears’s situation.


Who Will Benefit From the Chicago Municipal ID?

The city prepares to roll out a three-in-one identification card program

Ellen Hao

In early 2007, New Haven was the first city in the United States to issue municipal ID cards as part of an attempt to make its immigrant residents safer. Among many functions, the IDs allowed immigrants to open bank accounts and stop carrying cash, which was the target of many street robberies and home invasions. The IDs also encouraged immigrants who were crime victims to come forward, because immigrants knew they would be taken more seriously once they possessed official identification.

Education | Politics | Stage & Screen

Freedom Day, Fifty Years On

Kartemquin debuts "'63 Boycott"

Art Shay / Kartemquin Films

The 1963 Boycott of Chicago Public Schools was a pivotal moment in the history of education and racial justice, not only in Chicago, but in the whole country…I’ll repeat that again.” Then even more slowly and emphatically, Jay Travis, former Executive Director of Kenwood Oakland Community Organization, repeated the statement.

Best of the South Side 2017 | Chinatown

Best of Chinatown 2017

Zachary Jesse

I was born in ’52. There weren’t a lot of new immigrants coming in, and at the time, everybody was being Americanized. In my family, we tried to keep the language and the culture going. My father wanted us to speak Chinese at home all the time, and we went to Chinese school every day for six years.

Interview Issue 2017 | Interviews | Stage & Screen

A New Lens on Life

Reginald Rice on tracing a path through filmmaking

Bridget Vaughn

I was a dissenter. I retaliated against a lot of things, but more so I retaliated against the way people tried to color the world for me. I questioned, and I didn’t realize until I got older that I was always questioning why things have to be the way they are. I was deeply invested in my imagination, and cinema was that environment that sort of told me: you can create, these ideas can come out of you and unfold, and you can create the reality that you want through this particular medium.

Education | Lit | Lit Issue 2017

You Can Always Count On Me

Letters between CPS students challenge boundaries, barriers, and stereotypes

One of my uncle’s friends who is my friend too asked us to give him a kiss to the cheek…When I tried to do it, he turned his head and I kissed him on the lips instead of the cheek. That’s when I learned not to trust everyone.” Cung Lieu wrote this reply to Krystal Nambo after she asked him to share about a crazy memory he had.

North Lawndale | Visual Arts

Beyond the Ivory Tower

SAIC works toward community engagement in Lawndale

James Prinz Photography

A fourteen-story red brick building stands firm, looming above the rows of residential houses that form the Homan Square community of North Lawndale. The words “Sears Roebuck and Co,” written in white, crown the top of the building, and two white columns guard its base.