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ARP Grant Recipient SDSU Uses Funds to Host Film Festival

March 24, 2022

A rare films festival is bringing a multitude of cultural moments to South Dakotans.  

The South Dakota State University School of American and Global Studies, with funds from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, is screening the films throughout the state.  

The World Languages & Cultures Film Festival opened Feb. 1 with “Machuca” and Feb. 15 with “Remote.” It continues throughout the spring semester with shows March 29 and April 5, 12, and 19, and will pick up again in the fall semester. 

The SDSU School of American and Global Studies in Brookings received $15,800 in ARP funds, administered by the South Dakota Humanities Council, to fund the festival and associated community conversations around world cultures.    

“We are excited to provide South Dakota communities a unique opportunity to see high-quality films from around the world,” said Christi Garst-Santos, director of the School of American and Global Studies. “The festival furthers the school’s mission of advancing an understanding of world cultures through the arts.” 

The festival offers viewers an opportunity to hear and practice new languages, while exploring diverse cultures and perspectives with fellow students and community members. An SDSU faculty member will provide context for each movie before the showing. Many of these hard-to-find films are offered in collaboration with two national organizations: the PRAGDA Spanish Film Club and the African Film Festival of New York. 

While most films will be screened on the SDSU campus, two films, “Min Alesh?” and “Los Lobos,” will be shown at the State Theater in Sioux Falls. 

“We invite everyone to join us for any and all movies,” Garst-Santos said. “They are a fun way to learn about different cultures, hear other languages and discover new perspectives. The State Theatre events will include a special opportunity to sample dishes from Ethiopia and Mexico.” 

The festival also features the film “This May Be the Last Time,” which focuses on little-known Indigenous contributions to American music.

In recognition that the Coronavirus pandemic seriously impacted the public humanities across the state, the South Dakota Humanities Council provided $582,000 from the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021, through the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), to meet the emergency needs of organizations and to help sustain and strengthen the humanities in South Dakota.  

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