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Aug 2, 2023
12:00 PM to 1:00 PM
Friends of History Wednesday Lecture Series
Cultural Memory and Amateur Film: The Visual Legacy of the Gallup Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial

New Mexico History Museum

Please join Alison Griffiths, for an ON-LINE talk as part of our Friends of History Lecture series.

This lecture explores the vibrant history of the Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial (ITIC) from its inauguration in 1922 to the early 1940s. Drawing upon a treasure trove of materials on the ITIC from several regional archives, including the Palace of the Governors, Professor Alison Griffiths examines how photographs, films, posters, and other ephemera transport us into the rich history of Ceremonial that celebrated its centennial in 2022. These artifacts attest to the enduring legacy of the ITIC as a powerful symbol of Indigenous resilience with a rich record of visual, dance, and material culture. Special attention will be paid to amateur films of the ITIC made in the 1920s and 1930s, recordings capable of activating meanings that challenge notions of home movies as films without public value. The films were made by American geologist William Wrather and interweave footage of Wrather’s family with recordings of the parade and dances, bringing nuanced meanings to bear on the history of the ITIC.

Alison Griffiths is a Distinguished Professor of Film and Media Studies at Baruch College, The City University of New York, and a member of the doctoral faculty in Theatre at the CUNY Graduate Center.  She is the author of the multiple award-winning Wondrous Difference: Cinema, Anthropology, and Turn-of-the-Century Visual Culture (2002), Shivers Down Your Spine: Cinema, Museums, and the Immersive View (2008) and Carceral Fantasies: Cinema and Prison in Early Twentieth-Century America (2016) as well as over 50 journal articles and book chapters.  Her research has been supported by a Guggenheim Fellowship, and grants from the NEH, ACLS, The Waterhouse Family Institute, the Institute for Citizens and Fellows, and the Huntington Library in Los Angeles among others. She was recently awarded a Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Arctic Studies to Norway, where she will be undertaking research on early representations of Indigenous Sámi at the National Library of Norway in Oslo. Her latest book, Nomadic Cinema: A Cultural Geography of the Expedition Film, is forthcoming from Columbia University Press. You can learn more about her work at alisongriffiths.org.

ON-LINE Lecture Link here: https://friendsofhistorynm.org

Photo credit: "Poster for the third Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial, Sept. 10-12, 1924. Courtesy of the Inter-Tribal Indian Ceremonial Archive, Octavia Fellin Public Library, Gallup, NM"

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