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Toni Morrison theorizes “playing in the dark” as a kind of camouflage; the false consciousness of (white American) literature which has disavowed blackness on the one hand, while employing it as a playground for the imagination on the other. 

Water and Culture::Sharing and Caring about Water is designed to observe water in all its variations in meaning, as part of the UN's annually designated World Water Day. Water is our most precious earthly resource and a shared "commons" across the globe. How does SJSU's culturally diverse community fit into this globalized picture? How do local communities share  water in the sustainable and "green" context? How do multiple ethnicities, rituals, and makers offer rich context to what we already know or perceive about water and its place on Earth?

Water and Culture::Sharing and Caring about Water is focused around a film screening, Playing in the dark - watery experiments. Curated by Chrystel Oloukoï in conjunction with Canyon Cinema's Discovered program. The works gathered here by Toney Merritt, David Gatten, Samba Félix N’diaye, Hussein Shariffe, Ja’Tovia Gary, Everlane Moraes, and Miryam Charles, engage with the confounding qualities of water and its corrosive energies; from bodies to the environment, to the materiality of film itself. In purposeful contrast with imagery of water as a crystalline, transparent medium, the films dwell and revel in strange, turbid, still, abyssal, shallow, and impure waters.

Supported by the College of Humanities & the Arts Artistic Excellence Programming Grant.

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