Windy City Media Group Frontpage News

THE VOICE OF CHICAGO'S GAY, LESBIAN, BI, TRANS AND QUEER COMMUNITY SINCE 1985

home search facebook twitter join
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2021-09-01
DOWNLOAD ISSUE
Donate

Sponsor
Sponsor

  WINDY CITY TIMES

Ghosts in Our Machine film: 'Empathy Gene and Tofu'
by Liz Marshall
2013-12-05

This article shared 6644 times since Thu Dec 5, 2013
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email


Someone should do a survey; to actually see how many queer vegetarian/vegan women are out there. I suspect a very large percentage.

Ever since I came out in the early 90s, I have noticed the trend in queer women's spaces for hummus and veggies and tofu scramble, ( thankfully the veg world has exploded in recent years and there are many many more versatile foodie options, although I still eat and love hummus and tofu scramble! ). But seriously, what is this cliche about anyway? The empathy gene? We know that the majority ( 76% ) of our social media followers are female; I wonder how many of them are queer? Maybe it's not important, but I am curious … .

I am curious about the capacity for empathy. The film I directed, The Ghosts in Our Machine ( playing December 6-12, 2013 at the Music Box Theatre in Chicago ) is ultimately a plea for greater empathy. Animal sentience is defined in the first act, through the disembodied voices of cutting-edge scientists—"Sentience is the capacity to feel"; all animals are sentient, and humans are animals."

The film illuminates the lives of nonhuman animals ( the ghosts ) rescued from and living within the machine of our modern world. Through the heart and photographic lens of protagonist, photographer Jo-Anne McArthur, the audience experiences empathy for nonhuman animals. The audience also experiences the sentience of Jo-Anne McArthur, as she is the conduit into the hidden lives of the nonhuman animals featured throughout the film. Audiences are left with a new way of seeing animals as feeling and conscious beings, not merely as tools for production.

Since the world premiere of The Ghosts in Our Machine at the Hot Docs Film Festival in April/May of this year, the film has garnered several international awards and nods, and has attracted a myriad of reviews, from mainstream press to countless blogs, and it has been quite fascinating for me to observe not only the emotional, and often visceral reaction to the film, but also the interpretation of the film. The theme of empathy comes up repeatedly in various ways.

A queer woman, a film theorist and professor, Sherry Coman, wrote one of my favorite reviews of the film. After viewing the film she unpacked it for me saying that it's not "about" empathy but rather it "dwells in" empathy, not in a saccharin sentimental way, in a heartfelt and even tragic way. Many people will comfortably inhabit that space, while others will distance themselves from it. Coman's review of the film is here: hanadreaming.blogspot.ca/2013/10/the-ghosts-in-our-machine.html, and a list of reviews with hyperlinks can be found here: www.theghostsinourmachine.com/press/ .

So what about that "empathy gene?" Do vegans and vegetarians have a larger or more honed empathy gene? My partner Lorena Elke has a super sonic one; it is about 10,000 times bigger than your average person's when it comes to her capacity to feel for animals, and to want to help them. I have always cared for the underdog, for people and for animals, and have naturally "put myself in another's shoes," to feel their pain or joy. The only fistfight I had in grade school was with a bully. But my empathy for animals has developed and grown in the making of The Ghosts in Our Machine because I am more aware and tuned in to 'seeing' them. I wanted to make a film that would be a catalyst for people who care, but who need to care more. And there are those who will never care. When it comes to having empathy for other species, I think many people need to, and can, foster and develop this part of themselves/ourselves.

Liz Marshall is an award-winning auteur filmmaker who fuses character-driven cinematic storytelling with social and environmental justice issues. Since the 90s she has created a body of documentary projects shot all over the world which focus on a range of subjects including: animal use and animal sentience; the right to water movement; HIV/AIDS in sub-Saharan Africa; sweatshop labor; corporate-globalization; gender; censorship affecting writers and journalists, war-affected children; music icons and the written and spoken word. Liz is well versed in the craft of conceptual point-of-view storytelling as a means of exploring complex issues.

Marshall's current film is The Ghosts in Our Machine ( 2013 ), a critically acclaimed cross-platform documentary that illuminates the lives of individual animals living within and rescued from the machine of our modern world. Through the heart and photographic lens of acclaimed animal photographer Jo-Anne McArthur, we become intimately familiar with a cast of non-human subjects. The film follows McArthur over the course of a year as she photographs several animal stories in parts of Canada, the U.S. and in Europe. Each story and photograph is a window into global animal industries: Research; Food; Fashion and Entertainment.

Related article at the link: \www.windycitymediagroup.com/lgbt/Animals-rights-is-focus-of-Ghost-film-at-Music-Box/45423.html .


This article shared 6644 times since Thu Dec 5, 2013
facebook twitter pin it google +1 reddit email





Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here. Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you stay on this page, the more you help us.


  ARTICLES YOU MIGHT LIKE

Gay News

MOVIES 'Shang-Chi' actor in anti-gay controversy
2021-09-20
Actor Simu Liu—the star of the latest Marvel action movie Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings—is embroiled in controversy over alleged Reddit comments he made about how pedophilia is "no different from being gay," ...


Gay News

FILM REVIEW Chastain mesmerizes in 'Tammy Faye,' but bio offers few surprises
2021-09-20
Televangelists featured in some of the of the most spectacular falls from grace in the '80s. Television preachers who'd spent the better part of the '70s and the '80s insinuating themselves into pocketbooks, not to mention ...


Gay News

8th Annual Black Alphabet Film Festival on Nov. 5-7
2021-09-17
The 8th Annual Black Alphabet Film Festival (BAFF) will take place Nov. 5-7 at the University of Chicago's Reva and David Logan Center for the Arts, 915 E. 60th St. One of the longest running Black ...


Gay News

Brittany Devon meets a 'Platonic Girlfriend'
2021-09-15
Queer, genderfluid actor Brittany Devon has created a brand new project to explore with Platonic Girlfriend. It is the story of a relationship between straight woman Alice and a queer, nonbinary person named Dev. Devon stars ...


Gay News

THEATER Out actor Dan Butler to be in 'When Harry Met Rehab'
2021-09-15
Don Clark, a Chicago-based film/theater producer as well as co-owner of the Chicago Magic Lounge, will present the world premiere of When Harry Met Rehab—a comedy that takes sobriety seriously and is based loosely on the ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ 'Boy Meets Boy,' Jennifer Hudson, 'SVU,' tennis honor, ABBA
2021-09-12
Ariztical Entertainment is releasing the German movie Boy Meets Boy on DVD and VOD on Oct. 26. According to a press release, the plot of the 70-minute movie is as follows: "Harry has been partying for ...


Gay News

MOVES Talking about 'Everybody's Talking About Jamie'
2021-09-08
The new movie Everybody's Talking About Jamie tells the inspiring story of Jamie New, a young drag artist who overcomes hardship and homophobia in Sheffield, England. Out actor Max Harwood stars as New, who gets by ...


Gay News

Survivor shares the story of trauma and thriving in 'Untold'
2021-09-07
WARNING: This article contains material of a graphic nature. Gina M. Garcia is finally sharing her story of thriving after trauma in her new docu-drama biography, Untold: This is My Story, which premieres Sept. 6 at ...


Gay News

MOVIES Fall films harvest famous names for LGBTQ+ stories
2021-09-01
The film industry is featuring world-renowned names like Lady Gaga, Truman Capote and Tammy Faye on the big screen this fall season. Award-winning musicals, true-life stories and far-out fiction are all part of the fun in ...


Gay News

MOVIES 'On Broadway' to open Sept. 10 in Highland Park
2021-09-01
As theatergoers prepare for the return of Broadway after an unprecedented absence of 18 months, Kino Lorber is releasing Academy Award nominee Oren Jacoby's documentary On Broadway. The tribute to one of the most vibrant ...


Gay News

SHOWBIZ Billy Porter, 'Death Drop,' Brandi Carlile, vintage films, Gaga
2021-08-29
Billy Porter will direct a queer teen comedy feature titled To Be Real for Amazon Studios, which is being helmed by Gabrielle Union's I'll Have Another Productions, NME.com noted. Porter, who is currently working on his ...


Gay News

EVENTS Celebrity attendees named for Wizard World Chicago
2021-08-28
William Shatner (Star Trek; TV's Boston Legal), Michael Rooker (Guardians of the Galaxy, TV's The Walking Dead), Matthew Lewis (All Creatures Great and Small), James Marsters (TV series Buffy the ...


Gay News

TV Netflix animated series 'Chicago Party Aunt' debuts Sept. 17
2021-08-27
The LGBTQ-inclusive series Chicago Party Aunt will debut on Netflix on Friday, Sept. 17. Inspired by the popular Twitter account Chicago Party Aunt, this eight-episode adult animated comedy follows Diane Dunbrowski and nephew Daniel as they ...


Gay News

Reeling: The Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival announces full slate
2021-08-25
--From a press release - CHICAGO, Illinois — Reeling: The Chicago LGBTQ+ International Film Festival today announced the full slate of programming for 2021, opening September 23, 2021 at the Music Box Theatre (3733 N. Southport Ave.) and running September 24 ...


Gay News

MOVIES 'Mr. SOUL!' looks at groundbreaking '60s show and Black, gay host
2021-08-23
Al Green, Stevie Wonder, Patti LaBelle, Gladys Knight, Nikki Giovanni, James Baldwin, Cicely Tyson, Harry Belafonte, Muhammad Ali, The Last Poets, Earth, Wind & Fire, Sidney Poitier, Mavis Staples and even a teenaged Arsenio Hall were ...


 



Copyright © 2021 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 

TRENDINGBREAKINGPHOTOS







Sponsor
Sponsor


 



Donate


About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Advanced Search     
Windy City Queercast      Queercast Archives     
Press  Releases      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast      Blogs     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Privacy Policy     

Windy City Media Group publishes Windy City Times,
The Bi-Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.