Monday, November 20, 2006

Friendraiser Pictures

What a wonderful night! Thank you all for your support. We almost made our goal. If you are still interested in donating or couldn't make it out that night and want to support the work we do, until we get a more secure way of donating please send a check to:
Maya Chinchilla 3730 Penniman Ave Oakland, CA 94619
Care of Third Frame Films. Much love!

Sunday, November 12, 2006

More movies I recommend

"Camaron" This is an amazing movie. Period. It will make you laugh and want to dance and want to inject flamenco into your blood.

Mi Mejor Enemigo: Best movie ever! See it see it see it! It will make you laugh and will move you and inspire you to understand how wars are invented and are fought by young people who believe in their mythology... I met one of the actors coolest Chileans I have ever met

Amando a Maradona: FUTBOL FUTBOL..Yes my friends Futbol is a religion...

Al Otro Lado: This movie is beautiful. It moved me. yes people I cried. If anyone has any doubts about the necessities, tragedy but hopefulness of migration in many parts of the world see this movie. It will change you. The Cuban part of the story could have been more developed but other than if the end of this movie doesnt move you then you must check your pulse.

Movies I've seen that I recommend

I just saw this movie last night I HEART THIS MOVIE!!! You think you know the story of Romeo and Juliet but this is just a great movie. Funny, intense, beautiful such a fun movie! "Romeo and Juliet get Married" from Brazil

I met the actor from this film Damian Alcazar is he such a cool guy! So talented. He's been in movies like El Crimen de Padre Amaro, Cronicas, La Ley de Herodes y un monton mas...
Mundo Maravilloso

Tuesday, October 31, 2006


Nov 18th FriendRaiser @ Galeria de la Raza 7pm

THIRD FRAME PRODUCTIONS and Galeria de La Raza Present:


COME Support Women of Color Filmmakers

Support Independent Media Making!

Featuring two short documentaries

by Maya Chinchilla, Rinchen Lama and Lakeisha Coston

THE LAST WORD-featuring local artists

MADE IN BRAZIL-An inspiring story of a community..s search for self-sufficiency

Live performances by:

Maceo Cabrera Estevez: Cubana-unamerican performance artist

Maya -Digital Chapina

Rosa Gonzalez- Lucha One

Evan Hastings-the Puzzler

Cruz Grimaldo-Oaktown Shape Shifter

Xago Juarez- Xicano Word Wizard

Gabriela Garcia Medina-Cubana-Xicana reppin the city of Angels

Gerald Reyes-Pedagogical Super Poet

Anayvette Martinez- Urban GuaNica Mami

Milta Ortiz-Modern Salvi She-Ra

Somos ONE- Movimiento on a Microphone

Audio Stylings By
Acoustic set by Entre Musicos

$5-10-20 sliding scale
(no one turned away)

Where: Galeria de la Raza
2857 24th St. @ Bryant
San Francisco,CA 94110
Tel:| 415.826.8009
Fax: 415.826.6235

Also Check out THE LAST WORD
Nov.15 SF International Latino Film Festival @ City College San Francisco 7pm

“Las Niñas de Guatemala”: A Tribute to Women Victims of Femicide

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Made in Brazil- Got into Boyle Heights Film Fest!

BHLIFE film submission (made in brazil)
Body: Dear Maya Chinchilla,

Congratulations! Your film, Made in Brazil: Dreams at Work, has been selected to be part of the Boyle Heights Latina Independent Film Extravaganza (BHLIFE). We had many great entries and are proud to have the opportunity to include your film in the second annual BHLIFE festival....
You may reserve your seat by RSVPing at and you may purchase tickets for your guests at this site as well.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Your Help with My Media Justice Class

Hello my friends family,
I wanted to see if I could get your help. I am once again teaching a video arts class this time afterschool at UPA with Oakland Leaf in the Fruitvale with some beautiful and talented students. We are having are having a problem getting all the video cameras we need. Eventually we might even get a grant to buy some cameras but in the meantime I was hoping I could get your support in borrowing some cameras to use on Monday and Wednesday afternoons. I was able to borrow some cameras over the summer and never had a problem; they were all returned safe and sound.

Please let me know as soon as possible if you, someone you know or an organization might have a camera we could borrow. If you happened to know of someone or an organization that was even interested in donating a camera or two since we are a not profit we could easily make it tax deductable for you.
We are in need of about 4 or more home video type cameras that use mini dv. (if you arent sure just give me call or I can take a look at the camera)

You would be an integral part in making our projects a success and of course I would be ever greatful. When we have the end of the year presentation you will be included in our acknowledgements and maybe in the credits if the projects come out ready! Also if you are interesting in volunteering Monday (3:30-6:30) and Wednesday(1:30-3:30) (if you are a youth I might be able to pay you a stipend!) let me know...

Any and all support you could offer is really much appreciated. No it would be more than appreciated. Really. Abrazos.
415-516-9686 Maya
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Sunday, September 24, 2006

My Film in SF Latino Film Fest

Hey all I just got some great news! The Last Word just got accepted to the San Francisco International Latino Film Festival!!!! Nov 15, 7pm. I'll let you know when I get more information but hopefully those of you who are in California can make it out finally!!!! YAY!!!! I will be on a panel about hip hop and politics aparently. I needed some good news, its been a rough week.
Its so interesting to have worked so hard for so long (about a year ago I started this project) and be able to look back and see how far I have come. I sometimes cringe looking at my work realizing there are still things I would love to change and could make better but I suppose thats the reason I have to do more projects: growth and progress. And to do this work with the help and support of such an overworked and underpaid community...I hope to one day be a vehicle for giving recognition to those communities that have supported me. Much love, Maya

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Savage Inequalities

Check this audio of this interview of Kozol author of Savage Inequalities.

Jonathan Kozol on "Shame of the Nation"

Counterspin (1/6/06-1/12/06)

This week on CounterSpin: In his new book Shame of the Nation: the Restoration of Apartheid Schooling in America, Jonathan Kozol draws a grim picture of U.S. public schools, particularly those in poor urban neighborhoods. He graphically reports on the decaying infrastructure, the under-spending and overcrowding; the lack of art and music teachers, librarians, doctors—many of the things that are taken for granted in better-off, whiter public schools. But the central theme of Kozol's book, the theme that seems to connect these other troubling factors, is race. Kozol argues that racial segregation in public schools is beyond critical—perhaps as bad as it was three decades ago, with some formerly integrated schools becoming re-segregated.

Jonathan Kozol joins CounterSpin for a special extended discussion of public schools, race and the press.

Friday, September 08, 2006


*British MP George Galloway takes on Sky News (Fox’s UK counterpart)
about the War on Lebanon. It’s amazing!

MadCat Women's International Film Festival

MadCat is proud to present the Northern California Premiere of local
award-winning filmmakers Vicky Funari and Sergio De La Torre's
groundbreaking documentary Maquilapolis. This project is about the
conditions of Tijuana's assembly factories, the maquiladoras and how a
of courageous women have band together to fight the multinational
corporations who run them. MadCat presents the premiere at the Grand
Theater in Oakland, September 21, Tickets $10. This screening is a
fundraiser and will benefit the Wellstone Democratic Club and Global
Exchange. MadCat will also present Maquilapolis in SF at Yerba Buena on
Sept 24!

The Festival screens the SF premiere of How Little We Know of Our
Neighbours, a new documentary by award-winning filmmaker, Rebecca
Baron. How
Little We Know of Our Neighbours is an engrossing study of the Mass
Observation movement in Britain-an eccentric social science enterprise
in 1937 that used hidden cameras to record and scrutinize behavior in
spaces. Initially concerned with anthropology, the outfit became a
civil spy
unit during World War II before re-emerging as a market research firm
in the
'50s. How Little We Know of Our Neighbors considers this fascinating
of state-sanctioned snooping in relation to contemporary issues of
surveillance and privacy. This film screens in Surveillance Times at
ATA on
Fri, Sept 22.

See Movies you wont find anywhere else!
MadCat's screenings include diverse thematically-curated shorts
trailblazing documentaries, and slide presentations by local artists.

HIGHLIGHTS of the 10th Annual MadCat Film Festival
Tues € Sept 12 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
An ode to dwellers everywhere, whether in the city, country or the dry
plains of the desert. Documentary and surreal images explore home and
how we
place ourselves in this world. Greta Snider premieres new Viewmasters
her 3D documentary series. Also screening works by Maryam Kashani,
Reginato and Chelsea Walton. With live music by Paper Boats and Silian

A MADCAT RETROSPECTIVE-Local Ladies: A MadCat Retrospective
Wed € Sept 13 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
A selection of the best 16mm film from the past TEN years of MadCat.
works by: Donna Carter, Samara Halperin, Greta Snider, Chelsea Walton,
Willging, and others Also new works by Kerry Laitala and Jeanne Liotta!
filmmakers will be present for the screening.

Rural Women: Finding Independence
Fri € Sept 15 € ATA € 7:30 pm
These unique documentaries depict women with entirely different
to gaining independence. In a water deprived Iranian village, Atefeh
alone defending her fields from Mother Nature's arid whims. Unafraid of
work and tough negotiations, Atefeh stands her ground, a lone woman, to
her livelihood. In The Angelmakers, several women in a small town in
change their fate and that of the town through a series of irreversible
of desperation.

Motion Stopped: An Evening of Animation
Tues € Sept 19 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
Take an erotic musical tour of the sensual and obscene, go behind the
of Norman McLaren's innovative animation, and journey through cut-out,
puppet, hand-drawn and computer animated worlds.

Psycho Vision: 3D Hallucinations
Wed € Sept 20 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
Journey back to your childhood. We'll provide the Viewmasters and the
and you just click and enjoy. Vladimir, the Viewmaster maven, comes to
with her Vladmaster series, premiering, Fear & Trembling, and others.
in attendance is Zoe Beloff with her 3D 16mm film and slide show
performance, the saturated colorful world of Claire and Don in

Thurs € Sept 21 € Grand Lake Theater € 7:30 pm
A riveting political documentary about and by workers in Tijuana's
factories, the maquiladoras. This intimate film chronicles a tightly
community that sits in the shadow of one of Tijuana's 800 multinational
factories that thrive off of Mexico's cheap labor force. Directors
Funari and Sergio De La Torre in person.

Surveillance Times
Fri € Sept 22 € ATA € 7:30 pm
Video surveillance, surreptitiously recorded phone conversations,
radio stations. These innovative documentaries reveal the power of
surveillance technologies and the incumbent whittling away of civil
liberties and upending of notions of privacy.

Charming Augustine: A 3D Film
Sat € Sept 23 € Yerba Buena € 7:30 pm
A story of love, madness and the loss of control in glorious 3D.
what cinema might have been like had it been invented in the 1880s.
Filmmaker Zoe Beloff in person.

Sun € Sept 24 € Yerba Buena € 7:30 pm
A repeat screening with local filmmakers Funari and De La Torre in

Wishing Worlds
Tues € Sept 26 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
Stories from Pakistan, The Netherlands, Germany and France follow
in search of a homeland, young lovers in a surreal musical, an
struggle, and much more.

Charming Augustine: A 3D Film
Tues € Sept 26 € PFA € 7:30 pm
Repeat screening. Filmmaker in person.

CLOSING NIGHT-A Quiet Storm: Live Music Set to Silent Films
Wed € Sept 27 € El Rio € 8:30 pm € Free BBQ at 6:30 pm
Australian filmmaker Sally Golding and sound artist Joel Stern present
improvisational three-projector performance. 16mm films by Kerry
Courtney Hoskins and Sheri Wills set to live music by Tartufi and The
Secrets of Family Happiness.

Please excuse us if you receive this email more than once. To be
from this list Please write REMOVE in the Subject line and do not alter
body of the message. Thank you.

MadCat Film Festival VENUES
El Rio
3158 Mission St. @ Precita in San Francisco
Tues and Weds, Sept 12, 13, 19, 20, 26 & 27
Movies 8:30 pm; FREE BBQ at 6:30 pm
Rain or Shine
Tix: $7-20. Cash Only. 21 and over.
(415) 282-3325,

Artists' Television Access (ATA)
992 Valencia St. @ 21st in San Francisco
Fri, Sept 15 & 22. Movies 7:30 pm
Tix: $7-20. Cash Only.
(415) 824-3890,

Yerba Buena Center for the Arts
701 Mission St. @ Third in San Francisco
Sat and Sun Sept 23 and 24, 7:30 pm
Tix: $9. Cash or Credit Cards
(415) 978-2700,

Grand Lake Theater
3200 Grand Avenue in Oakland
Date September 21, 7:30 pm Tix: $10.
Advance tickets available by calling (415)
255-7296 Mastercard and visa accepted only in advance of the screening.
(510) 452-3556,

Pacific Film Archive (PFA)
2575 Bancroft Way in Berkeley
Date: Sept 26, 7:30 pm
Tix: $8. Cash or Credit Cards
(510) 642-5249,

There will always be tickets at the door!

For an entire line-up go to
MadCat Women's International Film Festival
639 Steiner Street
San Francisco, CA 94117 USA

Phone: 415 436-9523
Fax: 415 934-0642

MadCat Women's International Film Festival
639 Steiner Street Unit C
San Francisco, CA 94117 USA

Ph. 415 436-9523
Fax. 415 934-0642

The 10th Annual MadCat Women's International Film Festival
Screening the Best films by women directors from around the world
When: September 12-27 in San Francisco, Oakland and Berkeley.

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Saturday: Conscious Youth Media Crew

Wzup everyone,

I wanted to invite yall to an art show/ fundraiser at Gallery One at
the Embarcadero in SF on Saturday August 12th that is being hosted by
HOMEY, the Counscious Youth Media Crew, and Huaxtec.

We will be highlighting art and photography inspired by and
contributing to the Immigrant Rights Movement. CYMC will be premiering
their summer documentaries and running a photo booth.

Art By:
Jesus Barraza
David Sanchez
Francisco Dominguez
Drama One
Lady Tragik
David Cruz
Kevin Chan
Henry Morales
Gaby Arvisu
y los HOMEYS

Please pass it on and come thru to support.
Much love

Friday, August 04, 2006

WOC Film Festival Notes

I got to Santa Cruz late last night for the MALCS and Women of Color film festival. The air here in the evening is just like I remember it, salty, misty but not too cold and full of memories: Late night beachside talks with friends, intense relationships, growth, radio shows and music intensity, aftershow happy hours, friends only a few minutes away, deep sorrow and regret, memories of friends who have parted this world, and of course recent memories of last years film festival filled with late night dancing and fun, inspiration films and filmmakers, and coming away with a renewed commitement to my art.
So here I am a year later and my own film, video, my baby pues...will be debuting at her first film fest...I'm so excited I can hardly think of anything else...

I was worried that I didnt bring enough clothes for the cooler weather since I have been loving the perfect to hot weather in the east bay this summer...puro sandals, light pants/skirts and cute tops...

I went to what is the third day of the MALCS conference today saw a couple of cool panels and then we broke for lunch...I slipped away back to my friends cute little house in the beach flats to work out some of the last minute kinks in my documentary "The Last Word" so I can hand it to the film festival folks ASAP so they can have a better copy for the showing on Sunday. Its pretty stressful to still be making last minute changes especially when some of the seemingly small changes end up messing up some other part like the sound or an extra space where there shouldnt be one.

I hope I didnt miss any last detail. Right now I am just waiting for my computer to export the video to a dvd and be done with it. If I have time tonight or tomorrow I will make a few extra copies to see if I can sell some. I wonder if $10 is a good price or if that is too expensive. I think I will see what happens and if somebody really wants it I will enact a sliding scale.

I hope Lakeisha and Rinchen can make it out on Sunday...until this thing finishes outputting...I wait.

Monday, July 31, 2006

My Film the Last Word THIS WEEKEND

My Film shows on Sunday August 6th at 11:30 AM!!!

I would also like to share with you that I just
recieved a short film making grant from the San
Francisco Film Arts Foundation which gives me a year
mentorship and access to mentorship, workshops and
their facilities for ONE YEAR! (its a big deal) Lets

"Working for years in co-ed artistic spaces, these
women felt a need to develop a creative space for
women where their stories could be heard and developed
into creative works. The result was Las Manas a
diverse female spoken word/theater spitfire circle,
mixing in hip-hop and fuerte flavors with stories of
struggle, identity and the challenges that come along
with being a woman."

'The Last Word' Featuring: Rosa Gonzalez, Marisa
Castuera, Genevieve Debose, Gina Amato, Anayvette
Martinez, Cruz Grimaldo, Sasha Dobos Czarnocha, and
Maya Chinchilla

11:30 am SUNDAY Shorts Program #2:
(Regenerating through Creation)

Beat Back Bush Workout, Julia Ahumada Grob, 20 min

A Place to Begin, Monica Enriquez, 13 min

The Last Word, Maya Chinchilla, 27 min

12:30 pm Q & A with Filmmakers


The Research Cluster for the

Study of Women of Color in Collaboration and


13th Annual Women of Color

Film and Video Festival


SATURDAY, AUGUST 5th, 2006, 5:30-10pm

The festival opens with refreshments, appetizers,
and music by DJ Emancipacion.

Program with opening remarks by

Dr. Angela Davis and the WOC Research Cluster

begins at 7:00pm.

SUNDAY, AUGUST 6th, 2006, 9:00am - 8:00pm

Festival Continues with shorts programs,

feature films by Aishah Shahidah Simmons and Vu T. Thu Ha,
and Closing Remarks by Rosa Linda Fregoso


e-mail: or

13th Annual WOC Film and Arts Fest:
The theme of this year's Women of Color Film
Regenerations, draws inspiration from the number 13
the Mayan calendar, which symbolizes transformation,
movement, and change. This event builds upon the
tremendous history established by previous film
festivals to bring emerging and well-established
filmmakers, artists, media activists and community
members to our campus. As the longest running
festival of its kind, the UCSC Women of Color Film
Video Festival has sparked dialogue across
- locally, nationally, and trans-nationally - by
providing a platform for critical explorations at
the intersections of race, nation, class, gender, ethnicity, and sexuality.

Osa Hidalgo de la Riva, Womyn Image Makers, Ly Thu
Anh, Karla J. Gallardo and Antonette Santiago, Karla
J. Gallardo, La Quita D. Keele, Tania Cervantes,
Alicia Butler, Sonali Gulati, Maori Karmael Holmes,
Oriana Bolden, Hong-An Truong, Claudia
Arteaga, Alicia Woods, Joanne Suh,
Maya Chinchilla,
Aishah Shahidah Simmons, T. Rahman, Roberta Marie
Munroe, Masami Kawai, Maryam Keshavarz, Soo Na, Vu
T. Thu Ha


Adelina Anthony

dj emancipacion

Cihuatl Tonali

And that's not all!

Don't miss the


of the 13th Annual Women of Color Film Festival &

MALCS Summer Institute
(Re)Generations & Geographies

August 3-6, 2006

at the Porter College Bridge Gallery


QUICA, Gina Aparicio, Pamela Chavez, Adriana Garcia,

Alma Lopez, Yolanda Lopez, Dalila Mendez, Yadhira
Perez, Gabriella Santos


Please spread la palabra! Don't miss out on these
exciting and historic events that feature the art,
scholarship, and activisms of Women of Color!


Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Come on Out!!!

These are the youth I have been working with. Come on out and support this free community celebration!

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Tuesday, July 18, 2006

HeadRush on Spark

Check out my friends HeadRush streaming video on the Spark!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

Media Justice Resource List Part 1

I'm working on creating a list of alternative media and ways of practicing more film making skills for the youth I am working with in East Oakland Peace Camp. This is just what I have written down so far. Any suggestions on resources to add?

Youth Media Programs in the Bay:
Youth Sounds BAVC
Youth Radio
Conscious Youth Media Crew
Web Resources:
Video Making Survival guide
Digital Video Handbook
YO! Youth Outlook
Wire Tap

-Letters to the President (saw first part in class)
-Bus 174 (check out special features too)
-Born into Brothels
-The Boys of Baraka
-Freestyle: The Art of Rhyme
-Inventos: Hip Hop Cubano
-The Black Press: Soldiers Without Swords
-Beyond Beats & Rhymes: A Hip-Hop Head Weighs in on Manhood in Hip-Hop Culture
-Mad Hot Ballroom
-Fahrenheit 9-11
-Race is the Place
-The Corporation
-The Yes Men
-Bowling for Columbine
-The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
-Pa’lante: The Young Lords Party
-The Land Struggle (Tijerina)
-Taking Back the Schools
-The Bronze Screen:100 years of Latino Image in Hollywood
-Reading Between the Rhymes
-Viva la Causa Part I & II

Other movies:
-Real Women Have Curves
-El Norte
-Mi Familia

-Lauren Hill
-Tupac Shakur
-Zion I
-Ise Lyfe
-Company of Prophets

KPFA 94.1
Monday thru Friday
Hard Knock Radio 4-5pm (also in Seattle on Radio X)
Flash points 5-6pm
Demoncracy Now

Raza Chronicles

La Onda Bajita
Full Circle
NPR- National Public Radio
PBS (Public Broadcasting Station)

In the LA Area
Seditious Beats
Devine Forces Radio
Travel Tips for Aztlan
Canto sin Fronteras


Saturday, July 08, 2006

Cameras and Oakland

Hey beautiful friends and family.
I'm very excited because I am finalizing a class I am going to teach for Oakland Leaf Peace and Justice camp for the summer but I need your help.

We are going to be analyzing media and doing our own mini documentaries about oakland. I have two video cameras but I was hoping to borrow one or two more. I am looking into possibly borrowing from an organization but so far that hasnt come through yet. Im wondering if any of you have a video camera (that uses mini dv) of any quality (we dont need a professional camera or anything just something that works has a battery, records sound and video...basic).

Also if you have a tripod or a microphone we could borrow that would be great too. We promise to take excellent care of your equipment if you are able to share it with these bright beautiful oakland youth. I would need the cameras and tripods by july 12th and would proably only use them for a week. Let me know if you have a camera or any suggestions.

I have most everything else I need but also if you have any cool videos or media literacy materials that you think I might be able to use please pass it along! We are also looking for some guest speakers for my class as well as for the whole camp from organizations that the youth might be interested in getting involved in.
I am also looking to borrow the documentary 'Outfoxed' if I dont find my own copy (packed up somewhere while I'm moving out, by accident).
I'm so excited because I am going to be combining some of my favorite things: filmmaking, our youth and Social Justice!!!!
Take care and thank you all for your love and support.

The Bay

I'm moved out of my beautiful apartment cause it was time and cause I need to save some money. I'm feeling a little nomadic cause I got no place to be...but here I am in the fruitvale for a minute while I figure out my next move. In the meantime here's where I'm at in case you didnt know.

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Girl Fest Here I Come!

I GOT INTO MY FIRST FILM FESTIVAL!!!! (this is my first as a director. I went to two last year for Reading Between the Rhymes but I wasn't the director...)

So I was thinking it was going to be the spoken word doc with Las Manas just because I thought it went along more with their theme but it is for "Made in Brazil" Still very excited!!! Who wants to throw me a fundraiser so I can go? Thank you for all your support and love that helps me get through my mad scientist locked in the lab times so I can do these projects. Finally the fun part. No fun to make art unless it is shared with an audience, at least for me anyway...thats when the dialogue begins.

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Boyle Heights Latina Indie Film Fest

Celebrating Latina Voices and Cinematic Visions
December 8-10, 2006

Submissions of Films are being accepted in the following categories:
Documentaries (any length)
Experimental/New Frontiers

The Submission Deadline September 1, 2006 (postmarked) and there is no fee
Please send submission to:
P.O. Box 3363
Los Angeles, CA 90033
For more information please contact Katynka Martinez at

Monday, June 19, 2006

Las Manas-Featured Poets Sacramento

I just want to let you all know I will be in Sacramento this Friday with my 'Manas and maybe you can come through and taste a little of what we been cooking...abrazos

Tell your folks! Tell your Peoples!

LAS MANAS Spitfire Sister Circle will be featuring at
Galeria Posada w/ Los Escritores del Nuevo Sol
1421 R Street downtown Sacramento
Friday June 23

From Las Manas this friday:

Gina is an attorney, artist, and social justice activist from Los Angeles, California. Raised in both the Mexican and Italian traditions, Ginas fuerte flavor is as unique as her cultural identity. In addition to spitting fire in the Bay Area spoken word circuits, Gina is a samba dancer in San Franciscos Brazilian dance and percussion group, MaraReggae, and co-owns a jewelry business, Creadora Designs. Through her artistic, professional, and creative endeavors, Gina is committed to social justice and the empowerment of communities of color.

Maya is a Guatemalan poet, writer and the peoples documentarian. Currently she is finishing a documentary about women spoken word artists in the Bay Area called the Last Word. She also directed a documentary about a non-profit in Brazil entitled "Made in Brazil: Dreams at Work". She associate produced the documentary Reading Between the Rhymes about the use of hip-hop in education. Maya is a fervent advocate for immigrant rights, teaches workshops
to youth, opening hearts and minds to social justice and towards ending discrimination. As a co-coordinator of the End-Dependence Spoken Word/Artists' Collective, founding editor of LA REVISTA Santa Cruz, and performer in LAS MANAS and Epicentro poets, Maya enjoys organizing events showcasing artists who investigate and celebrate the intersection of politics, media and art.

Cruz is shape shifter turned poeta and playwright. She was born and raised in south-east LA (el ley) and made a woman in the Town (Oakland, if you dont know, now you know!) where she has resided for over a decade. As a thespian she has done everything from Shakespeare (with Hugh Richmond sand Colin Cox) to agit prop theater ( with Teatro Manos Arriba), to Broadway musicals (off Broadway, of course) to the original works of such avant-garde and brilliant playwrights as Rosa Gonzalez, Marc David Pinate and Luis Xago Juarez. She is perpetually enamored by her beautiful, adolescent son Elihu and is also currently enamored with everything hyphey and the Gospel according to Mary Magdalene , yaddamean?!

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Lunada Sunday June 11

LUNADA: Literary Lounge & Open Mic
Featuring Jaime Cortez

Co-Presented by Queer Latina/o Artists Coalition

Sunday, June 11 @ 7:30pm
Admission: $5 General (FREE with food dish or Galeria Membership)

Jaime Cortez is an artist, writer and cultural worker based in Oakland, CA. His visual art has been exhibited at numerous venues including the Oakland Museum of California, Huntington Beach Center for the Arts and in San Francisco art spaces including Southern Exposure, The Lab, Intersection for the Arts and Galería de la Raza.

A performer and writer his credits include stints at Theater Rhinoceros, Josie's Cabaret, BRAVA and the Cell and his writings include Besame Mucho, 2sexE and Queer PAPI Porn. He has edited an anthology entitled Virgins, Guerrillas & Locas for Cleis Press (1999) and is the author of a graphic novel, “Sexile” (Los Angeles: 2004).

Friday, June 02, 2006

La Cabrona's Tips for Writers Block

My semester is finally over and I was able to get a lot of work done finally
after I chained myself to my laptop and stopped communitcating to the outside world.
Someday I hope to become more healthy in my work habits.
Every day I work on it. But here's what I did, a "no nonsense" guide with a lot of nonsense that depending on your style might work for you.

Don't get out of bed.
Sleep with your computer.
Clean your entire house.
Go to a cafe all day.
Forget to eat.
Go to a cafe without wireless.
Wear headphones so people dont try to talk to you.
Play some music that doesnt distract you too much.
Doubt your abilities.
Tell yourself that you dont give a fuck.
Stop doing house chores.
Ignore your friends phone calls.
Get off the mother fucking myspace and stop checking
Print out what you have written so far and try reading
it from another perspective (maybe give it to someone
who will give you actual feedback instead of "it looks
Talk out your ideas.
Ignore the suggestions that you might want to read this or that
(cause bitch I aint got time) and write down suggestions for future research.
Connect a mouse and ergonomic keyboard to your laptop so your wrists will stop hurting from writing in bed.
Convince someone to feed you.
Outline what you want to say.
Write Crap.
Reread your notes.
Be thankful that now you can barely think you wrote notes on things you read.
Make Cute headings.
Tell yourself you are an unrecognized/misunderstood
Quit being a bitch about it and get it done.
Repeat and Rinse.

Oakland Summer Peace Camp

Let all the young folks know!
Information Session Tuesday June 6 6:30-7:30pm
Place: Oakland Leaf Office 1419 34th Ave. @ international

Thursday, May 25, 2006

calle 13

Grad School Blues-Certifiable

Um... please somebody remind me that I am too old to stay up all night finishing research papers. I closed my eyes for maybe a half hour on tuesday night and then got up to go to a morning class and give a presentation on wednesday that no one was awake enough to really pay attention to. I'm still messed up from not sleeping. I took a little nap yesterday and today I still feel like shit, like its going to take forever to get back on some normal schedule. Hooray for grad school. and yes people. I am crazy. Certifiably. Definately. Positively. And now for your audio visual pleasure....

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Granito de Arena-Documentary

Granito de Arena - Film Screening and Fundraiser*
Saturday, May 27, 2006 at 4:00 pm ($8 adult, $4 seniors)
Roxie Theater, 3117 16th Street, between Valencia and Guerrero, SF

Followed by refreshments and music with Los Mocosos, LIVE! at New
College Cultural Center- 766 Valencia St., SF - This event is free!

Granito de Arena is a story of resistance - the story of hundreds
of thousands of public schoolteachers whose grassroots, non-
violent movement took Mexico by surprise, and who have endured
brutal repression in their 25-year struggle for social and
economic justice in Mexico's public schools.

Granito de Arena gives voice to the increasing number of teachers
who believe their movement is in crisis and who are exploring
community-based alternatives in their struggle to defend public
education. Featuring a driving soundtrack by DJ Food, Slowrider,
PlanB, and Los Mocosos, Granito de Arena fuels indignation,
inspires action, and raises important questions about democracy,
sovereignty, and the universal right to public education.

$8 - To purchase tickets, visit For more
information, call 415-516-0338

*Fundraiser for Teachers 4 Social Justice and New College
Bilingual Teacher Education Scholarship Fund.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Get decolonial News, maybe

Check it!

Saturday, May 20, 2006

make the friggin call!

Please take a little time to call your senators. For real this stuff they are trying to pass it going to affect all of us. Like new id cards with tracking devices. It doesnt take much to call and call often. Leave a message and just let them know that you support legalization and human rights...or go to one of these websites that support possitive immigration legislation to get more info on the specifics. I called yesterday. You have no idea how important it is to call. This is how our legislators make their decisions by hearing from you in the form of a fax or a phone call they count it as representing a larger voice of dissent. For reals. REAL TALK. It doesnt take much time out of your day. Here's a local number for Feinstein 415-3930-0707
ITS THE VERY LEAST YOU CAN DO and its pretty simple. abrazos, la mayita

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Filmmaker Community

I'm testing out this filmmaker community. Check out these links and let me know what you think. I think soon I will be able to upload trailers and things like that.


Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Immigration Action Now

I know I know. You get all frustrated about all the crazy madness in the world. Well here's your good deed for the day: you may think its not much but its a part of the world we live in and a way for you to act. click the link up above get more info and act already. do it now. dont let them slip this stuff under our noses when we were so empowered by the actions taking place across the country. This is one of those things to put on the top of your to do list. You can even do it this weekend when you have those free minutes. Dont sleep on it!

Oppositional Theory

I'm feeling really "oppositional" to my department at the moment. Looking for a little inspiration for the writing I have to do in the next week I came across this page:

Monday, May 15, 2006

For mothers day

A letters from mother and daughter feminists about the other generation...

Letter to my mother
Letter to my daughter

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Fierce Ladies Who Type

Check out these fierce lady bloggers:

and of course their sites have even more lovely links. Have fun!

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

The F Word

Oh yeah baby. Check this link for hot and sexy feminists.

Monday, May 08, 2006

The Mexican OC

I loved this article. Several years ago after graduating from college in a very "open minded" dare I say activist town of Santa Cruz I moved home to Long Beach and I did my time working in Orange County. I did my time people! I think everyone who has the strength needs to get step out of their supportive communities and do your time as well in other areas that desperately need some alternative voices in the mix...

O.C. can you say ... 'anti-Mexican'?

By Gustavo Arellano, GUSTAVO ARELLANO is a staff writer with OC Weekly, where he writes the "¡Ask a Mexican!" column.

I TEND TO SNORE during plays, but my peepers didn't flutter once when I attended a staging of "The Mexican OC," a new play highlighting the history of Mexicans in Orange County. Though the vignettes jump from the 1892 lynching of a Mexican laborer by Santa Ana civic leaders to the student walkouts of this March, the theme remained the same: If you're a Mexican in the county of milk and Mickey, expect mucho discrimination.

"The Mexican OC" retells many familiar yarns — about the Minutemen, gentrification battles, Mendez vs. Westminster (the 1945 legal case that desegregated schools in Orange County and that Thurgood Marshall cited in arguing Brown vs. Board of Education). My only complaint with the play was that it only scratched the surface of my county's bizarre history of hating the Mexican.

For instance, it didn't mention the late INS Commissioner Harold Ezell, a Newport Beach resident and local GOP stalwart who once told reporters that "illegal aliens shouldn't be deported; they should be deep-fried." Or the recent incident in which a Rancho Santa Margarita woman accused three maids of stealing her purse and got the Orange County Sheriff's Department to help deport them before officers determined that this Desperate Housewife had left the purse at a McDonald's.
Read entire article

Asian Americans and the Immigrant Debate

Thanks to Angry Asian man for compiling these links. You so angry. Its hot. Anti-immigratition policies? sooooo racist.

Asians get more vocal in immigration debate
In Asian communities, just another day
Thousands Turn Out, but Support Is Mixed Among New York's Immigrants
Asian Media Report Conflicts Over Economic Boycott
Chicago Protest Draws Diverse Support
¡Sí, Se Puede! Immigrant Movement Lost in Translation?

Radical Reference

Check out this website of "radical" librarians. Oh yeah those who know how to get and organize the information. Totally hot.

About radical reference
Submitted by radref on Sun, 08/01/2004 - 2:18pm.

“…librarians are more freedom fighters than shushers.�?

--Carla Hayden, Ms. Magazine online

Mission Statement: Radical Reference is a collective of volunteer library workers who believe in social justice and equality. We support activist communities, progressive organizations, and independent journalists by providing professional research support, education and access to information. We work in a collaborative virtual setting and are dedicated to information activism to foster a more egalitarian society.

That's the official line. Here's "the rest of the story." Radical reference originated as a service provided by volunteer library workers from all over the United States to assist demonstrators and activists at the convergence surrounding the Republican National Convention in New York City August 29-September 2, 2004. We are evolving, expanding our services, and continuing to utilize our professional skills and tools to answer information needs from the general public, independent journalists, and activists. Service will be provided via this web site, blog, e-mail, chat, phone, in the street and Ouija board.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Mujeres De Maiz-see me in print!

A poem of mine is in this Zine and is part of the exerpts on the website. How beautiful. Even though I have been performing this poem for a while its been a long time since I've published a poem. I will be working on a publication of my own this summer. Stay tuned.

After 8 years of hibernation...
Mujeres de Maiz Zine 2006
is ready to be printed!
We need your help to get started:

after months of planning and designing...
ZINE 2006
has become a beautiful 60 page booklet!
with over 20 poems,
and 20 full color pages of original works,
showcasing over 30 visual artists & poets,
Representing generations in a growing network of creative women of color,
pre-order to reserve
your copies today!
only $20 each!

A limited number will be printed so pre-order your copy soon!

$20 + postage & handling ($3.00) reserves your copy.
Follow the link below:

If you know any digital printers who are able to donate their services,
please let us know!

This is a VERY grassroots project!!!
With your donation we will be able to publish and continue to build our women's creative network into a
real-time community organization!
Thank you for your support!

Mujeres de Maiz- Los Angeles
Contact: Margaret Alarcon

Friday, April 28, 2006

Get your terms correct

NAHJ Urges News Media to Stop Using Dehumanizing Terms When Covering Immigration
Calls for stopping the use of illegals as a noun, curbing the phrase illegal alien
Media Contact:

Joseph Torres (202) 662-7143; Daniela Montalvo (202) 662-7152

Washington, D.C. -- As protesters march in the streets and debate intensifies in Congress over how to fix the nations immigration laws, the National Association of Hispanic Journalists calls on our nations news media to use accurate terminology in its coverage of immigration and to stop dehumanizing undocumented immigrants.

NAHJ is concerned with the increasing use of pejorative terms to describe the estimated 11 million undocumented people living in the United States. NAHJ is particularly troubled with the growing trend of the news media to use the word illegals as a noun, shorthand for "illegal aliens". Using the word in this way is grammatically incorrect and crosses the line by criminalizing the person, not the action they are purported to have committed. NAHJ calls on the media to never use illegals in headlines.

Shortening the term in this way also stereotypes undocumented people who are in the United States as having committed a crime. Under current U.S. immigration law, being an undocumented immigrant is not a crime, it is a civil violation. Furthermore, an estimated 40 percent of all undocumented people living in the U.S. are visa overstayers, meaning they did not illegally cross the U.S. border.

In addition, the association has always denounced the use of the degrading terms alien and illegal alien to describe undocumented immigrants because it casts them as adverse, strange beings, inhuman outsiders who come to the U.S. with questionable motivations. Aliens is a bureaucratic term that should be avoided unless used in a quote.

NAHJ, a 2,300-member organization of reporters, editors and other journalists, addresses the use of these words and phrases by the news media in its Resource Guide for Journalists. The following are excerpts for some of the terms prevalent in the current news coverage:


A word used by the U.S. government to describe a foreign-born person who is not a citizen by naturalization or parentage. People who enter the United States legally are called resident aliens and they carry alien registration cards also known as "green cards," because they used to be green.

While Webster's first definition of the term "alien" is in accordance with the government's interpretation, the dictionary also includes other, darker, meanings for the word, such as a non-terrestrial being," "strange," "not belonging to one," "adverse," "hostile." And the Encyclopedia Britannica points out that "in early times, the tendency was to look upon the alien as an enemy and to treat him as a criminal or an outlaw." It is not surprising then that in 1798, in anticipation of a possible war with France, the U.S. Congress passed the Alien and Sedition Acts, which restricted "aliens" and curtailed press freedoms. By 1800 the laws had been repealed or had expired but they still cast a negative shadow over the word.

In modern times, with science-fiction growing in popularity, "alien" has come to mean a creature from outer space, and is considered pejorative by most immigrants.

Illegal alien

Avoid. Alternative terms are "undocumented worker," or "undocumented immigrant." The pertinent federal agencies use this term for individuals who do not have documents to show they can legally visit, work or live here. Many find the term offensive and dehumanizing because it criminalizes the person rather than the actual act of illegally entering or residing in the United States. The term does not give an accurate description of a person's conditional U.S. status, but rather demeans an individual by describing them as an alien. At the 1994 Unity convention, the four minority journalism groups NAHJ, Asian American Journalists Association, Native American Journalists Association and National Association of Black Journalists issued the following statement on this term: "Except in direct quotations, do not use the phrase illegal alien or the word alien, in copy or in headlines, to refer to citizens of a foreign country who have come to the U.S. with no documents to show that they are legally entitled to visit, work or live here. Such terms are considered pejorative not only by those to whom they are applied but by many people of the same ethnic and national backgrounds who are in the U.S. legally."

Illegal immigrant

While many national news outlets use the term "illegal immigrant," this handbook calls for the discussion and re-evaluation of its use. Instead of using illegal immigrant, alternative labels recommended are "undocumented worker" or "undocumented immigrant." Illegal immigrant is a term used to describe the immigration status of people who do not have the federal documentation to show they are legally entitled to work, visit or live here. People who are undocumented according to federal authorities do not have the proper visas to be in the United States legally. Many enter the country illegally, but a large number of this group initially had valid visas, but did not return to their native countries when their visas expired. Some former students fall into the latter category. The term criminalizes the person rather than the actual act of illegally entering or residing in the United States without federal documents. Terms such as illegal alien or illegal immigrant can often be used pejoratively in common parlance and can pack a powerful emotional wallop for those on the receiving end. Instead, use undocumented immigrant or undocumented worker, both of which are terms that convey the same descriptive information without carrying the psychological baggage. Avoid using illegal(s) as a noun.


Avoid. Alternative terms are "undocumented immigrant" or "undocumented worker." This term has been used to describe the immigration status of people who do not have the federal documentation to show they are legally entitled to work, visit or live here. The term criminalizes the person rather than the actual act of illegally entering, residing in the U.S. without documents.


Similar to reporting about a person's race, mentioning that a person is a first-generation immigrant could be used to provide readers or viewers with background information, but the relevancy of using the term should be made apparent in the story. Also, the status of undocumented workers should be discussed between source, reporter and editors because of the risk of deportation.

Undocumented immigrant

Preferred term to "illegal immigrant," "illegal(s)" and "illegal alien." This term describes the immigration status of people who do not have the federal documentation to show they are legally entitled to work, visit or live here. Some Latinos say this term more accurately describes people who are in the United States illegally because the word points out that they are undocumented, but does not dehumanize them in the manner that such terms as aliens and illegals do.

Undocumented worker

Preferred term to "illegal alien," "illegal immigrant," or "illegal(s)." This term describes the immigration status of people who do not have the federal documentation to show they are legally entitled to work, visit or live here.


Monday, April 24, 2006

Las Manas in Chambana-ILLI-NoiZE

our stay here in Illi-NOIZE and our performance Friday night was OFF THE HOOK FOR SHEEEEZEEE. We wrote some cute little numbers that especially the oakland peeps would be able to groove on. Cruz and Genevieve did an awesome tribute to Oakland, Anayvette and I did a tribute to lonjas (thats love handles for the spanishly challenged) and Anayvette and Genevieve did a piece about Gentrification . All went off TIGHT-like. The audience was so great and so appreciative! WE LOVE IlliNOIZE!!! We love Champaign-Urbana (also known as Chambana)!!! Pictures soon to come.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Spend the Night with Las Manas-Illinois

Pass the word and let us know of anything interesting to do in Chicago!

A Spoken Word Event Sponsored by CRC:

"Many Truths and Many Voices: Spend the night with Las Manas"
Cruz, Maya, Anayvette and Genevieve

Friday, April 21, 2006

801 S. Lincoln
Champaign, Illinois

7 PM

"Las Manas", short for las hermanas or the sisters, is a diverse all
female spoken word performance collective and sister circle. The
members of Las Manas, which include Rosa Gonzalez, Cruz Grimaldo, Maya
Chinchilla, Gina Amato, Marisa Castuera, Sasha Dobos-Czarnocha,
Genevieve Debose, Susie Lundy and Anayvette Martinez, originally came
together in 2004 to cultivate a fierce feminine voice and sense of
sisterhood within the Bay Area spoken word scene. These Bay Area
funkdafied divas re-construct revolution on the daily through words,
actions,street-corners, classrooms and bedrooms.

The group believes
that there are "many truths and many voices."

Their performance style is characterized by a mixture of theater,
spoken word and dance centered around themes of sexuality, motherhood,
queerness and the relationship between first and third world women. Las
Manas was created out of the need for these women to find a supportive
space to nurture their creative spirits.

Individually these women are accomplished in their own right but as Las Manas they are able to take their creativity to new heights using sisterhood and storytelling to
inspire collaborative pieces that delves in pain, injustice, love,
family, community, and identity to conjure up a potent potion to fend
off the plague of self sabotage. Most recently they have performend at
the San Francisco Hip Hop theatre festival (2005), Hecho en Califas
Tour(2005), Teatro Luna and Galeria de La Raza, as well as cafes, schools,
taquerias and pupuserias all across da' Bay.

The event is paid for, in part, by the Student Cultural Programming Fee
and Student Affairs Program Coordinating Council. Other co-sponsors
include Gamma Phi Omega and Critical Research Collaborative.

Sunday, April 16, 2006

April 23 mass mobilization


12:00 M - Gather at Dolores Park (18th St. and Dolores St.)

2:00 PM - March to SF Federal Building (Golden Gate Ave.
and Polk St.)

Community organizations, labor, students, and faith-based
groups are
organizing the Bay Area's largest mobilization for
immigrant rights on
Sunday, April 23. Join us and bring your friends and

Contact: Sheila Chung, Bay Area Immigrant Rights Coalition,


The next event on the fight against fascist anti-immigrant
will be on Sunday April the 23rd.

This will be the first massive march in Northern California
on a Weekend.

There will be another huge march on May 1st, but many
people won't be
able to attend that one, so this is the chance for
everybody to show
their support for ALL IMMIGRANTS!

We hope to meet you all at the corner of 18th & Dolores St.
at noon.

Please make copies and distribute the included flyers.






El proximo evento en la lucha contra la legislacion
anti-inmigrante sera
una masiva marcha en San Francisco, el domingo 23 de abril.

Esta es la primera gran marcha en el Norte de California en
fin de
semana por lo que les pedimos que distribuyan esta
informacion lo mas
ampliamente posible.

Habra otra gran marcha pero sera dia lunes, 1ero de mayo, y
mucha gente
no esta dispuesta a dejar de trabajar ese dia, asi que esta
es la
oportunidad para que todos los que se han perdido las
acciones pasadas
participen en esta historica lucha por nuestros derechos.

Los esperamos a todos en la esquina de la calle 18 y
Dolores a las 12m.

Por favor impriman y distribuyan los volantes incluidos
se enviaran volantes revisados)


Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Documentary Storytelling-WORD

So its been a productive week. I finally recovered from my month long battle with pnemonia, taking a side trip in the middle there with the help of dayquil every four hours(probably the generic version...) to Puerto Rico for the LASA conference, which then took me weeks after trying to recover, but still one of the best experiences of my life...
And I finally entered the Brazil documentary into two film festivals (with the help of my filmmaking soul mate, Rinchen's hookups).

Tonight I went to a very inspiring documentary storytelling workshop with Adrian Belic and Aron Ranen

I took a final cut pro workshop with Aron about a year ago which not only gave me a jump start on my impressive (but still sometimes slow mo) editing skills, but also just inspired me to keep at it (you know this whole documentary passion) after a frustrating experience working on someone else's project who never let me touch the computer...booooo.

I wish I could take more classes with him cause he's a really great teacher with the right amount of nutty thrown in, but lately the classes have either been during times I am working or I have to decide between "uh rent, gas or documentary class?...hmmm." And believe me sometimes you just need to take a class that isnt a semester long and gives you some practical real world knowledge to recharge your batteries.

But luckily the stars came together and I made it out to one of lower cost workshops tonight. The combination of Aron's interview questions and steering of the class with his tried and true teaching tactics and Adrian's incredible passion, mind blowing globe trotting experiences combined with a dash of some of his real world success, reinforced some things I've learned on this path, gave me some new ideas to chew on, while giving me just the little push I need right now not to give up.

I'm still working on "The Last Word". It just needs some time and maybe some fresh eyes to get it to the point where I can say "its done". But I've been a little burnt out and am not the fastest editor in the world. I miss my German editor Daniel (he went back to Germany in January) which I was lucky enough to have throughout the beginning of the process and functioned on chocolate and cookies... but I think he went mad by the end in his dungeon cutting out "ums" and "breaths" to keep it under 30 mins... Too bad I didnt think to bring a copy tonight to get some input but I just couldnt pull that together since wednesdays are my most exhausting days...
I also miss the editing experience I had with Rinchen for the Brazil doc, where, you know, she just, completed me (*tear*)
And my co-producer/crime fighter/unit production manager "La La the Lakefish" with organizing skills the stuff dreams are made of, is just trying to graduate and working on some other maybe she doesnt love me any more...(*tear, tear*)

I also met two women who are doing their own documentary work, check it out:
It was really nice to meet other folks who are just as passionate about this as I am.

I need to learn how to make some cool websites and figure out the promotion side of this documentary mad scientist journey...oh and I need to rob a bank or at least pay off a credit card so I can max it out again and get a day.

And also I'm off next week to perform at University of Illinois...worked on the structure of our performance last night with the Las Manas ladies...more on that later...

Saturday, April 08, 2006

A tragedy because of the lack of support/understanding

This should not have happened. Click on the link above.


Click to play Flash animation.
Special (Flash animation - click to play)

Mark Fiore
Wed, 12 Apr 2006 17:26:06 PDT

Click to play Flash animation.
Phobia (Flash animation - click to play)

Mark Fiore
Wed, 05 Apr 2006 17:36:28 PDT

Click to play Flash animation.
Apology (Flash animation - click to play)

Mark Fiore
Wed, 29 Mar 2006 17:38:15 PST

Click to play Flash animation.
The Bush Bash (Flash animation - click to play)

Mark Fiore
Wed, 22 Mar 2006 15:48:09 PST

Click to play Flash animation.
Thank You NeoConMen! (Flash animation - click to play)

Mark Fiore
Wed, 15 Mar 2006 17:10:11 PST

Thursday, April 06, 2006

guide to applying to graduate school

Check out the hard core graduate student friend o' mine "Vanessa Au's not-so-quick-and-dirty guide to applying to grad school"
Chock full of good information. She leaves no stone unturned.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Justice for Immigrants NOW

Check out the links to the right.........>

Subject: commonly used attacks against immigrants
Body: Myths vs. Facts


Immigrants pay taxes, in the form of income, property, sales, and taxes at the federal and state level. As far as income tax payments go, sources vary in their accounts, but a range of studies find that immigrants pay between $90 and $140 billion a year in federal, state, and local taxes. Undocumented immigrants pay income taxes as well, as evidenced by the Social Security Administration's "suspense file" (taxes that cannot be matched to workers' names and social security numbers), which grew by $20 billion between 1990 and 1998



Immigrants come to work and reunite with family members. Immigrant labor force participation is consistently higher than native-born, and immigrant workers make up a larger share of the U.S. labor force (12.4%) than they do the U.S. population (11.5%). Moreover, the ratio between immigrant use of public benefits and the amount of taxes they pay is consistently favorable to the U.S. In one estimate, immigrants earn about $240 billion a year, pay about $90 billion a year in taxes, and use about $5 billion in public benefits. In another cut of the data, immigrant tax payments total $20 to $30 billion more than the amount of government services they use.

(Source: "Questioning Immigration Policy – Can We Afford to Open Our Arms?", Friends Committee on National Legislation Document ..G-606-DOM, January 25, 1996.


In addition to the consumer spending of immigrant households, immigrants and their businesses contribute $162 billion in tax revenue to U.S. federal, state, and local governments. While it is true that immigrants remit billions of dollars a year to their home countries, this is one of the most targeted and effective forms of direct foreign investment.



" IF AN IMMIGRANT THAT CAN'T EVEN SPEAK ENGLISH IS TAKING YOUR JOB..YOU ARE ONE STUPID MOTHERFUCKER...." Does anyone have the right to claim a job 'belongs' to them?

The largest wave of immigration to the U.S. since the early 1900s coincided with our lowest national unemployment rate and fastest economic growth. Immigrant entrepreneurs create jobs for U.S. and foreign workers, and foreign-born students allow many U.S. graduate programs to keep their doors open. While there has been no comprehensive study done of immigrant-owned businesses, we have countless examples: in Silicon Valley, companies begun by Chinese and Indian immigrants generated more than $19.5 billion in sales and nearly 73,000 jobs in 2000.

(Source: Richard Vedder, Lowell Gallaway, and Stephen Moore, Immigration and Unemployment: New Evidence, Alexis de Tocqueville Institution, Arlington, VA (Mar. 1994), p. 13.


During the 1990s, half of all new workers were foreign-born, filling gaps left by native-born workers in both the high- and low-skill ends of the spectrum. Immigrants fill jobs in key sectors, start their own businesses, and contribute to a thriving economy. The net benefit of immigration to the U.S. is nearly $10 billion annually. As Alan Greenspan points out, 70% of immigrants arrive in prime working age. That means we haven't spent a penny on their education, yet they are transplanted into our workforce and will contribute $500 billion toward our social security system over the next 20 years

(Source: Andrew Sum, Mykhaylo Trubskyy, Ishwar Khatiwada, et al., Immigrant Workers in the New England Labor Market: Implications for Workforce Development Policy, Center for Labor Market Studies, Northeastern University, Boston, Prepared for the New England Regional Office, the Employment and Training Administration, and the U.S. Department of Labor, Boston, Massachusetts, October 2002.'center%20for%20labor%20market%20studies%20at%20Northeastern%20University%20studies')


Within ten years of arrival, more than 75% of immigrants speak English well; moreover, demand for English classes at the adult level far exceeds supply. Greater than 33% of immigrants are naturalized citizens; given increased immigration in the 1990s, this figure will rise as more legal permanent residents become eligible for naturalization in the coming years. The number of immigrants naturalizing spiked sharply after two events: enactment of immigration and welfare reform laws in 1996, and the terrorist attacks in 2001.

(Source: American Immigration Lawyers Association, "Myths & Facts in the Immigration Debate", 8/14/03.,142..section4)

(Source: Simon Romero and Janet Elder, "Hispanics in the US Report Optimism" New York Times, (Aug. 6, 2003).


The percentage of the U.S. population that is foreign-born now stands at 11.5%; in the early 20th century it was approximately 15%. Similar to accusations about today's immigrants, those of 100 years ago initially often settled in mono-ethnic neighborhoods, spoke their native languages, and built up newspapers and businesses that catered to their fellow émigrés. They also experienced the same types of discrimination that today's immigrants face, and integrated within American culture at a similar rate. If we view history objectively, we remember that every new wave of immigrants has been met with suspicion and doubt and yet, ultimately, every past wave of immigrants has been vindicated and saluted.

(Source: Census Data:, )


Around 75% of today's immigrants have legal permanent (immigrant) visas; of the 25% that are undocumented, 40% overstayed temporary (non-immigrant) visas.

(Source: Department of Homeland Security (


From 1986 to 1998, the Border Patrol's budget increased six-fold and the number of agents stationed on our southwest border doubled to 8,500. The Border Patrol also toughened its enforcement strategy, heavily fortifying typical urban entry points and pushing migrants into dangerous desert areas, in hopes of deterring crossings. Instead, the undocumented immigrant population doubled in that timeframe, to 8 million—despite the legalization of nearly 3 million immigrants after the enactment of the Immigration Reform and Control Act in 1986. Insufficient legal avenues for immigrants to enter the U.S., compared with the number of jobs in need of workers, has significantly contributed to this current conundrum.

(Source: Immigration and Naturalization website:


No security expert since September 11th, 2001 has said that restrictive immigration measures would have prevented the terrorist attacks—instead, the key is effective use of good intelligence. Most of the 9/11 hijackers were here on legal visas. Since 9/11, the myriad of measures targeting immigrants in the name of national security have netted no terrorism prosecutions. In fact, several of these measures could have the opposite effect and actually make us less safe, as targeted communities of immigrants are afraid to come forward with information.

(Source: Associated Press/Dow Jones Newswires, "US Senate Subcommittee Hears Immigration Testimony", Oct. 17, 2001.)

(Source: Cato Institute: "Don't Blame Immigrants for Terrorism", Daniel Griswold, Assoc. Director of Cato Institute's Center for Trade Policy Studies (see:

information provided by:

Monday, April 03, 2006

Action Coalition for Media Education

Attend the Media Education Conference of the Year - ACME's CONTINENTAL SUMMIT

Facing the Media Crisis: Media Education for Reform,
Justice and Democracy
October 6-8, 2006
Burlington, Vermont

SF Women's Film Festival

Damn I wont be able to make the first night of documentaries as I will be in Illinois but it looks like a great program. So I hope to make it out when I can. M

The SFWFF 06' will take place from April 19-30, 2006 at Zeum, El Rio, SF Women's
Building, Parkway Theater and Minna Gallery.

Tickets on Sale Now HERE

We’re also very proud to co-host an 11th Annual Women of Color Film Festival program at this year’s SFWFF. WOCFF continues its commitment to premiering both promising works from novice artists and recognizing the accomplishments of award-winning filmmakers from the African, Asian, Latina, Middle Eastern and Native diasporas. The 11th Annual Women of Color Film Festival 2006 takes place on March 2-5 & 11. More information visit:

SFWFF 06' Screenings:

4/19 LGBTQ Opening Night Shorts Program at El Rio 7pm, $10

4/20 Short Films by Lise Swenson, Ang Yee Sien, Tova-Beck Friedman & Women in
Animation for Adults at SF Women's Building 7pm, $8

4/21 Young women in the Directors Chair: Short Films by Teens presented by Reelife
Movie Camp & Women of Color Shorts Program presented by Women of Color Film Festival
at SF Women's Building 7pm, $8

4/22 Women Documentary Filmmakers at SF Women's Building 8pm, $8

4/23 Short Film and Feature Presentation at Parkway Theater 5pm, $7
All is Normal co-directed by Todd Bieber/Juliana Brafa (U.S.A, 2005, 77 min) SF Premiere,
starring emerging young actress Juliana Brafa and Academy Award Nominee and Golden
Globe Winner Linda Blair (Exorcist) this edgy thriller blurs the line between reality and
one's own mental terror when Janet, a naïve college drop-out, tries to cut off from her
sadistic boyfriend. Working as a house sitter in a secluded Appalachian mountain home
she soon finds herself in a disturbing mixture of isolation, confusion, and murder.

4/27 Shorts Program & Documentary at SF Women's Building 7pm, $8
Between Midnight and the Rooster's crow directed by Nadja Drost (Canada, 2005, 66 min)
SF Premiere, Canadian oil giant En Cana is under fire for the constructions of an oil
pipeline that has becomes one of the world's most controversial mega-projects, faced
with mass-opposition in Ecuador, as well as abroad. Follow the journey of a Canadian
filmmaker as she investigates why an oil company is mired in social and environmental
controversy in the Amazon.

4/30 Women in Animation with Osnat Shurer, Producer of Pixar at Zeum 2-4pm, $7

4/30 Closing Night Screenings & Party with special guest Danny Glover presented by
SINVINO Sparkling and at 111 Minna Gallery at 9pm, $10

Saturday, April 01, 2006

Sleep Now in the Fire

Just felt like posting this. Still relevant as always. Enjoy

Friday, March 24, 2006

SF Hunger Strike & Week of Actions

Check out this blog updating the Hunger Strike in San Francisco for Immigrant rights.

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Puerto Rican Poetry Travels

I wrote this on the plane back home under the influence of flu medicine and exhaustion:

A solidarity baby travels

At the speed of yesterday
Encounters paradise and traffic jams
Hammocks for dreams and love-making
Pot holes and roads rarely travled
Heavily policed secondary sexualities
Sun-stroked economic hustlers beating down on imaginary countries
Associated states of yearning and just getting by
nationalistic flag waving
light blue for independence.

Don’t forget Puerto Rico,
where bilingualism
gives me hope of tropical utopia
Strangled in American dollars
Faulty freedoms comes at a price
blockading temporary travel for Cubans
stifling intellectual interchange
enduring temperamental transnational transgressors.
Legacies of Caribbean pirates dance on the sand to salsa backbeats
With rebellious dancehall reggaeton anthems from streetcorners
Grinding, slapping bodies
releasing tensions instead of dancing around the issues
From this pressure cooker of ownership
Air conditions, conditional flows
Get me stuck in random colonial moments

I revel in mixed conversations
Flirt with community and temporary latino-ness
Juggling my own schizophrenic bridge making
Ruptures in my centralamericanness
Forging traveled identity and generational self knowledge
Timeless transitions
Recognition in bicultural living
Seeking rican-struction to call my own.

Tuesday, March 07, 2006

Desi Power Online

I thought this article was very interesting. Do any of you feel like the internet is a place that helps reinforce or create connections for your identity? M

There are 2 million South Asians in America today. They read, date, party and, increasingly, organize for political change online.
More stories by Tanzila Ahmed
She asked me what Friendster was. I stuttered. She was a high school friend of mine, and we had met up for coffee when I went home this break. Our lives took drastically different paths since high school, and when we had gone shopping that day, I was excited to buy a braided belt and she a Dyson vacuum cleaner. She's a fourth-grade teacher now, goes to bible study every Thursday, and is a married homeowner. We are both 26. And, she asked me, "What is Friendster? What's a blog? How do you date online?"

I was floored. This alternative web world is so much a part of my daily life -- I connect with friends online, write stories online, found a place to live online and, yes, even date online. Most importantly, I have a sense of South Asian American identity because of online. In the past couple of years, I have witnessed an explosion of South Asian American youth subcultures on the web.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Immigrants Gain the Pulpit

Cardinal Mahony says he will ask priests to provide
aid without proof of documentation even if proposed
restrictions become law.
By Teresa Watanabe
Times Staff Writer

March 1 2006

Wading back into the growing debate over illegal
immigration, Cardinal Roger M. Mahony on Tuesday
denounced what he called "hysterical" anti-immigrant
sentiment sweeping California and the nation.

The complete article can be viewed HERE

Wednesday, March 01, 2006

International Latino Film Festival Screenings

International Latino Film Festival Screenings
March 10th and April 7th Events

ILFF in Collaboration with the Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts Invites You!

Film Screenings:
Historias del Desencanto
In a limbo between centuries, the world is devastated by a spell known as Disenchantment. In this fantastic context, three characters meet in the labyrinth of their dreams: Diego, who tries to make a movie about the dreams of Ximena, an adolescent experiencing her first sexual awakening, and Ainda, a bat-winged conceptual artist. Striking art design and digital imagery from directors Alejandro Valle, Felipe Gomez are a delight.
Friday, March 10

Through the pulsating voices of Cubano Hip Hop pioneers, Inventos provides a unique insight into the realities and political movements of contemporary Cuba as they perform on stage in Cuba and then abroad for the first time. Inventos embodies the true spirit of Hip Hop; the creation of something that is powerful and useful. Puerto Rican director Jacobs-Fantauzzi's film is inspirational and serves as a reminder to all generations of the political consciousness in which Hip Hop was created and flourishes.
Friday, April 7

Scribble's Creations
Teacher-turned-director Kathy Huang takes a rare look at an often ignored community of Americans: the residents of the colonias, unincorporated settlements along the U.S.-México border. Through the travails of her former student Fernando, a young urban artist, the world of the colonias is revealed to its fullest-from leaky ceilings and family squabbles to young love and unflagging optimism.
Friday, April 7

MCCLA Directions

Historias del Desencanto
Stories of Disenchantment

Dir. Alejandro Valle and Felipe Gomez 2005, Mexico. 120 min.
Feature Narrative. Spanish with English subtitles.
DATE: Friday, March, 10
TIME: 7:00pm
General Admission: $6.00

Inventos: Hip Hop Cubano

Dir. Eli Jacobs-Fantauzzi 2003. USA, Cuba. 50 min.
Feature Documentary. Spanish with English subtitles.
Inventos Poster
DATE: April 7
TIME: 7:00PM
General Admission: $6.00

Scribble's Creations

Dir. Kathy Huang 2004. USA. 45 min.
Feature Documentary. English
DATE: Friday, April 7
TIME: 7:00PM
General Admission: $6.00

The Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts
phone: 415-821-1155