DER Documentary

Through These Eyes

by Charles Laird
color, 55 min, 2003




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At the onset of the space race in the 1960s, the U.S. government feared its educational system was slipping behind the Soviet Union's. A controversial science initiative grew out of its response, Man: A Course of Study, a program with the ambitious goal of teaching American children what it was to be human. At the program's core was a benchmark of visual anthropology, the Netsilik Eskimo series, capturing a year in the life of a small Inuit community on the cusp of contact.

Man: A Course of Study created a clash of values that rippled throughout the schools of America, and revealed the fragile relationship between politics and educational reform. Weaving together remarkable archival and contemporary footage, Through These Eyes revisits the politics and controversy of this unprecedented era in American educational reform and offers an historical perspective on the study of anthropology.

Film Festivals, Screenings, Awards
Documentary and Ethnographic Film Festival, Belo Horizonte, Minas Gerais, Brazil, 2004
Montreal World Film Festival, 2004
Save Salt Spring Film Festival, British Columbia, Canada, 2004
Interuniversity Ethnographic Film Festival of Montreal, 2005
Bilan du Film Ethnographique, Paris, 2005
Northeastern Anthropological Association Ethnographic Film & Video Festival, Lake Placid, NY, 2005
Heard Museum Film Festival, Arizona, 2005
NAFA, Sweden, 2005
10th RAI International Festival of Ethnographic Film, London, 2005
American Psychological Association Annual Convention, Washington DC, 2005
Society for Visual Anthropology/American Anthropological Association Conference, Washington DC, 2005
Gottingen International Film Festival, Germany, 2006
Days of Ethnographic Film, Ljubljana, Slovenia, 2008
European Association of Social Anthropologists' Film, Video & New Media Festival, Slovenia, 2008

Related Resources
Anthropology as Subversive Art

Related Films
Alaskan Eskimo series
Netsilik Eskimo series
The Professional Foreigner



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