On Wednesday, July 21, 1773, two graduating seniors at Harvard, Theodore Parsons and Eliphalet Pearson, were summoned before a public audience to debate whether slavery was compatible with “natural law.” No More, America (2017; 14 min.), a film by Peter Galison, reimagines this original debate to include the powerful voice of Phillis Wheatley, an acclaimed poet, then-enslaved, who lived just across the Charles River from the two Harvard students. Her presence serves as an intervention, rejecting the racist rhetoric employed by both sides through excerpts from her published works.
Menschel Hall, Lower Level, Harvard Art Museums, 32 Quincy St
To coincide with the biennial symposium of the American Council for Southern Asian Art at Harvard’s South Asia Institute, the Harvard Art Museums are screening two landmark Bollywood films, Amar Akbar Anthony (1977) and Chak De! India (2007). The screening is timed also with the centennial of when Ananda K. Coomaraswamy became the first curator of Indian art in North America (at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston), an appointment that set in motion the collecting and study of South Asian art at Harvard. Today, the Harvard Art Museums hold a world-renowned collection of Rajput and Mughal paintings from South Asia, a selection of which is currently on view in the installation “Women in South Asian Art.”
CGIS South, Room S010 (Tsai Auditorium), 1730 Cambridge St
A peasant comes to St. Petersburg to find work. He unwittingly helps in the arrest of an old village friend who is now a labor leader. The unemployed peasant is also arrested and sent to fight in World War I. After three years, he returns ready for revolution.
Houghton Library presents its 107th George Parker Winship Lecture. Archivist, filmmaker, and educator Rick Prelinger will speak on 'Effacements in the Repository: Do Physical Objects Have the Right To Exist?'
Level 0, Lecture Hall, Carpenter Center for the Visual Arts, 24 Quincy St
Laurie Simmons and Andrew Fierberg present the film My Art, 2016 (running time, 86 min. US Distribution, Film Movement). Conversation to follow with artist Laurie Simmons, producer Andrew Fierberg, and Emmet Blakeney Gleason Professor of Visual and Environmental Studies Giuliana Bruno.
Borrowing its title from a book by American journalist John Reed (of Reds fame), Sergei Eisenstein's Ten Days That Shook the World reenacts the crucial week-and-a-half in October, 1918, when the Russian Kerensky regime was toppled by the Bolsheviks.