WHAT IS SPANISH FILM CLUB?
Spanish Film Club, an initiative by PRAGDA, offers grants twice a year to help high schools and universities bring the very best in contemporary Spanish and Latin American cinema to campuses with the aim of introducing students to the language and cultures of these territories. More than 100 schools have participated in the program so far.
The inventive model allows schools to select a minimum of five films from a catalogue to create a film festival on campus. A committee of experts in Ibero American cinema has made an eclectic and diverse selection of films featuring first-time filmmakers and established masters alike. All films feature English subtitles. Representing 19 countries, new films are added every year. Spanish Film Club also encourages the organization of virtual Q&As with filmmakers and provides all the necessary material for the festival’s promotion.
The project’s ultimate goal is to introduce students and a generally broader audience to the cultures of Ibero American countries and to create a stable exhibition platform of the latest Spanish and Portuguese language cinema.
“It is always my aim to introduce thought-provoking texts that challenge student assumptions about cultural otherness in the courses that I teach. The festival offered a superb repertoire for discussions of this nature.”
– Dr. Jennifer M. Formwalt, Assistant Professor of Spanish, Director Spanish Summer Language Institute, North Georgia College
CLICK HERE to read more comments from schools that have already hosted the program.
WHY SPANISH FILM CLUB?
Outside of a few well-known exceptions, there is very little distribution of contemporary Ibero American cinema throughout universities. One of Pragda’s goals is to provide professors and educators from every department access to materials rarely or never seen within North America and other territories. In addition, Pragda is interested in opening markets for films that would normally have a difficult time reaching general audiences. Knowledge and cultural exchange are keys in a country where Hispanics are the largest minority.
Spanish Film Club was created to answer the following questions by students and professors:
1. Why can’t professors teach about Human Rights, for instance, with new, exciting, and up-to-date documentaries?
2. One of the best ways of learning a language is through films and TV, why can’t we use these tools in class?
3. I don’t have the resources to travel, but I love learning about the many cultures addressed in class. I wish professors could explain the different customs of the regions they teach with more illustrative tools than books.
4. Wouldn’t it be terrific to watch never-before-seen films in Spanish, right on my university campus?
5. How could I meet students from other university departments who share the same love for Spanish culture?
6. I am tired of watching always the same Hollywood stories, but there are no art-house theaters in my university town. Can’t the university organize alternative screenings of national and independent cinemas?