American Arab

American Arab
Genre:
Documentary | Director: Usama Alshaibi | Language: English | Length: 60 minutes | Country: United States | Year: 2013 | Rating: NR, some strong language

In Kartemquin’s American Arab, Iraqi-born Director Usama Alshaibi takes a provocative look at the contradictions of Arab identity in post 9/11 America, weaving his own life’s journey and “coming-of-Arab” experiences into the life stories of several diverse characters. Exploring the values, passions, and hopes of his fellow Arab-Americans, Usama tries to make peace with his conflicted chosen homeland.

Arab-Americans are not one monolithic group, but rather a diverse and complex array of many voices and cultures. This film weaves sadness and humor, anger and satire, provocation and understanding, embracing the multifaceted Arab American experience of post 9/11 America. By shedding light and giving clarity to a recent and difficult time for Arabs living in the US, American Arab shows how the struggles over identity within this documentary are universal.

American Arab is a project of Kartemquin’s first Diversity Fellowship, sponsored by The John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and The Ford Foundation. For more information, see the film’s website: https://www.kartemquin.com/films/american-arab

This film is available to colleges, schools, and libraries through the Cinema Guild, click here for more information.

NCSCOS Essential Standards: WH.H.7, WH.H.8, AH2.H.7, AH2.H.8, 12.C.1.3 (Sociology)

The Wanted 18

The Wanted 18
Genre:
Documentary, Animation | Director: Paul Cowan, Amer Shomali | Language: Arabic, English, French, Hebrew, English Subtitles | Length: 75 mins. | Country: Israel and Palestinian Territories | Year: 2014 | Rating: NR

It’s 1987, and the first Palestinian poplar movement in the West Bank is rising. Residents want local alternatives to Israeli goods, including milk, which they’ve been buying from an Israeli company. And so begins the strange story of the 18 cows. The plot is hatched by pacifist intellectuals and professionals. Not your typical dairy farmer. These “lactivisits” forge ahead anyway, buying 18 cows and smuggling them into the West Bank of Beit Sahour. But who knows anything about cows? These newly minted farmers have to learn the most basic skills – even how to milk their charges, which isn’t as easy as it looks. Eventually, the cows come to the attention of Israeli authorities, and the chase is on – a cat-and-mouse (or soldier-and-cow) game writ large, as the cows shuttle from barn to barn, which their pursuers determined to find them. The cows become legendary and the “intifada milk” (sometimes distributed under cover of darkness) becomes a part of daily life.

More information about the film can be found here.

NCSCOS Essential Standards: WH.H.8.1, WH.H.8.2

Cedars in the Pines

Cedars in the Pines
Genre: Documentary | Director: Akram Khater | Language: English | Length: 55 minutes | Country: United States, Lebanon | Year: 2012 | Rating: NR

Over the past 130 years the Lebanese have created a rich legacy in North Carolina. They have built businesses from humble beginnings and innovative ideas, and shared their rich culture through food, dance, faith, art and literature. This film narrates the lives of those who have journeyed from Lebanon to build new homes, raise families and describes the 130-year history of the Lebanese in North Carolina. The film was produced by Professor Akram Khater of NC State University.

The Duke-UNC Consortium for Middle East Studies is proud to have sponsored a screening of Cedars in the Pines. The Khayrallah Program for Lebanese-American Studies offers more information about the production and the continuing project on the Lebanese in North Carolina.

Find curriculum to accompany the film here.

Available for free streaming online here.

NCSCOS Essential Standards: 4.H.1.3, 4.G.1.3, 4.C.1.1, 8.H.2.3, 8.H.3.1, 8.G.1.2, 8.C&G.1.4, 8.C.1.2, 8.C.1.3