Ohio Wesleyan to Host Award-Winning Filmmaker Anne Makepeace

University to Screen, Discuss Documentary ‘We Still Live Here’ at Free Nov. 7 Event

Anne Makepeace will screen her film ‘We Still Live Here’ and speak Nov. 7 at Ohio Wesleyan University. (Photo courtesy of Anne Makepeace)

DELAWARE, Ohio – Award-winning filmmaker Anne Makepeace will visit Ohio Wesleyan University on Nov. 7 to lead a screening and discussion of her documentary “We Still Live Here,” exploring “the revitalization” of the language of the Wampanoag tribe of New England. The tribe’s ancestors greeted and assisted the Pilgrims when they arrived in the New World on the Mayflower in 1620.

Makepeace’s presentation will begin at 7 p.m. Nov. 7 in the Benes Rooms inside Ohio Wesleyan’s Hamilton-Williams Campus Center, 40 Rowland Ave., Delaware. The event marks the 20th presentation of the university’s Butler A. Jones Lecture on Race and Society.

“We Still Live Here” follows Wampanoag linguist Jessie Little Doe Baird, who has worked to bring her people’s native language, Wôpanâak, out of obscurity after more than 100 years. Baird is the founder of the Wôpanâak Language Reclamation Project.

The documentary has earned Makepeace multiple awards, including the prestigious Inspiration Award at the Full Frame Documentary Film Festival and the Moving Mountains Award at the Mountainfilm in Telluride Festival. The film also was an official selection to the 2012 American Film Showcase and has aired on the PBS “Independent Lens” series.

In explaining why she chose to tell the Wampanoag’s story, Makepeace told a Westword journalist: “What attracted me to the story is that it’s a native story about resurrection and reclamation. So much history and so much media about Native Americans is about the devastation of the cultures. … This story is about native people not dwelling on all the terrible things that have happened to them, but reclaiming their identities for their children – for future generations.”

Makepeace also has received critical acclaim for several of her other works. Her 2000 documentary about photographer Edward S. Curtis, “Coming to Light,” was considered for an Academy Award after premiering at the Sundance Film Festival. The film won Best Documentary at the Mountainfilm in Telluride Festival as well as the American Historical Association’s John E. O’Connor Award.

During her career, Makepeace has served as a Sundance Institute documentary fellow and was a documentary juror at the 2001 Sundance Film Festival. Her films have been broadcast internationally and screened at the Smithsonian and the Museum of the American Indian.

Ohio Wesleyan’s Butler A. Jones Lecture on Race and Society has been held by the university’s Department of Sociology and Anthropology since 1995. The lectures commemorate Jones’s “contributions to the field of sociology and race relations, his involvement in the civil rights movement, and his commitment to the development of other scholars and professionals.”

Founded in 1842, Ohio Wesleyan University is one of the nation’s premier small, private universities. Ohio Wesleyan offers more than 90 undergraduate majors, sequences, and courses of study, and 23 NCAA Division III varsity sports. OWU combines an internationally focused curriculum with off-campus learning and leadership opportunities that connect classroom theory with real-world practice. Located in Delaware, Ohio, OWU’s 1,850 students represent 41 states and 45 countries. The university is featured in the book “Colleges That Change Lives,” listed on the 2012 President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll with distinction, and included on the “best colleges” lists of U.S. News & World Report and The Princeton Review. Learn more at www.owu.edu.

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