Penn Program onDocumentaries & the Law

Penn Law

Penn Law's 2008 Visual Legal Advocacy Roundtable

Building Video Bridges

Friday, October 17, 2008
9:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Penn Law School – Gittis 2
34th & Chestnut Streets · Philadelphia, PA

This Roundtable should be of interest to public interest lawyers, entertainment lawyers, law students, law professors, ITS specialists with public interest organizations, documentary filmmakers, and members of the Penn community who are interested in nonfi ction video production and social justice issues.

Watch videos of the roundtable here.

Speakers include:

  • Michael L. Wong, Penn Law Class of 2009; co-producer and co-director of the documentary short “Shmul Kaplan”
  • Dr. Gretchen Berland, Yale Medical School; producer and director of the documentary “Rolling: Life in a Wheelchair”
  • Dr. Carolyn Cannuscio, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania
  • Professor Carol Jacobsen, School of Art & Design, University of Michigan; producer and director of the documentary “From One Prison”
  • William M. DiMascio, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Prison Society
  • Margie Smith, Partner, Thinktank Films
  • Mark Eyerly, Associate Dean for Communications, Penn Law School

Anyone wishing to attend should register in advance by emailing Anna Gavin, Events Coordinator of the Law School at agavin@law.upenn.edu. The organizers will seek approval for four and one-half hours of Pennsylvania Continuing Legal Education credit to be provided for a nominal fee of $50. Please indicate your intention to seek CLE credit when you communicate with Ms. Gavin about your attendance.

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Agenda

8:45 – 9:30 a.m.

Registration, Continental Breakfast, Photo Exhibit, & Invited Exhibitors

9:30 – 10:20 a.m.

VLA at Penn Law

Progress Report – Professor Regina Austin, Director, Penn Program on Documentaries & the Law

Premiere and Discussion of “Shmul Kaplan,” a documentary short – Michael L. Wong, Penn Law Class of 2009, co-producer and co-director

After living most of his life in Kazakhstan, Shmul Kaplan, a 70-year-old disabled Jewish survivor of the Nazi invasion of the Ukraine, visited the United States for the first time. No longer able to endure the religious and ethnic persecution he had faced his entire life, he successfully applied for asylum and began down the path to American citizenship. Little did he know that the journey would be a long and arduous one because of protracted delays in the naturalization process. After seven years of waiting to become a citizen, Mr. Kaplan lost the SSI benefits on which he depended because of a time limitation enacted into law by the 1996 Welfare Reform Act. He hung on for as long as he could—living on only food stamps and $215 a month. Then he became the named plaintiff in a class action lawsuit brought by lawyers from Ballard Spahr, Community Legal Services, and HIAS and Council Migration Service. See how this courageous man helped himself and others realize their American Dreams.

10:30 a.m. – 12:00 noon

Video Diaries: Putting Cameras in the Hands of Clients

Speaker: Gretchen Berland – Assistant Professor, Department of Internal Medicine, Yale Medical School; MacArthur Fellow; producer and director of the documentary “Rolling: Life in a Wheelchair “

Commentator: Carolyn Cannuscio, Assistant Professor of Family Medicine and Community Health, Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; former Robert Wood Johnson Health & Societies Scholar; co-principal investigator, Health of Philadelphia Photo Documentation Project

12:00 – 1:00 p.m.

Lunch (Provided free of charge to all Advance Registrants)

1:00 – 2:20 p.m.

Video in the Pursuit of Justice: The Michigan Women’s Justice & Clemency Project

Speaker: Carol Jacobsen – Professor, School of Art & Design, University of Michigan; Professor, Women’s Studies Program, College of Literature, Science and the Arts, University of Michigan; Director, Michigan Women’s Justice & Clemency Project; producer and director of the documentary “From One Prison”

Commentator: William M. DiMascio, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Prison Society

2:30 – 3:40 p.m.

Packaging Your Message with Video for Old and New Media

Margie Smith – Partner, Thinktank Films; director of the “Sugiarto Family Deferred Action Application,” a video produced by Penn Law and HIAS and Council Migration Service

Commentator: Mark Eyerly – Associate Dean for Communications, Penn Law School

3:40 – 4:00 p.m.

Talkback/Feedback

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Anyone wishing to attend should register in advance by emailing Anna Gavin, Events Coordinator of the Law School at agavin@law.upenn.edu.

For more information contact Professor Regina Austin, Penn Law School, 3400 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA, 215-898-5185 or raustin@law.upenn.edu

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