Awake and Engage(d) Documentary Film Series

Wednesday, September 11, 2019
1:00 PM - 3:00 PM
Event Type
Meeting / Conference
Michael J. Jaynes
English Department

What: AwAE campus screening # 42
Host: Andrew Najberg
Film to be screened: Babushkas of Chernobyl
Film website with trailer:
Note: All films shown will be shown with closed-captioning if possible. Also, if anyone has any need for specific physical accommodations, sign language interpreters, or other needs, please contact M. Jaynes ( and we will be happy to accommodate!
Series presented by: M. Jaynes and Andrew Najberg
Series sponsors: UTC English department and UTC Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies
Synopsis (from website): 
In the radioactive Dead Zone surrounding Chernobyl’s Reactor No. 4, a defiant community of women scratches out an existence on some of the most toxic land on Earth. They share this hauntingly beautiful but lethal landscape with an assortment of interlopers—scientists, soldiers, and even ‘stalkers’—young thrill-seekers who sneak in to pursue post-apocalyptic video game-inspired fantasies. Why the film’s central characters, Hanna Zavorotyna, Maria Shovkuta, and Valentyna Ivanivna, chose to return after the disaster, defying the authorities and endangering their health, is a remarkable tale about the pull of home, the healing power of shaping one’s destiny and the subjective nature of risk.  
Info about AwAE:
This Year, UTC is home to the twelfth-annual Awake and Engage(d) documentary film series (AwAE). Conceived and co-founded by M. Jaynes in 2008, it is now hosted alternately by M. Jaynes, Andrew Najberg, and the occasional guest host. AwAE, a semiannual colloquium, screens activist-based and socially conscious documentary films with the aim of fostering a renewed interest in some of the most pressing issues confronting the graduates of our university in the future.  As mainstream media too often ignores the voices of "others" on the periphery and quashes the message of the marginalized, AwAE provides a forum for documentarian narratives that interrogate the status quo and offer alternative perspectives that encourage sustainability, preservation and participation. The films chosen for this series place an emphasis on the civic responsibility of individuals by demonstrating some of the dangers facing the environment, animals, economies and civil rights in the not-so-distant globalized future.  So, this year, please join us at AwAE 12 to discover the work of documentarians advocating social and ecological justice in the modern world.

Free and open to all students
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