Winter 2015

  • Jan-Mar 14-13 Wed-Fri

    Of Water and the Spirit Zéna Allen

    • ZenaAllen
    12:00 AM

    Art Exhibit


    “Of Water and the Spirit” is an exhibit of Zéna Carlota Pearl Allen’s most recent work as it relates to ritual, mythology, and dreams in  diasporic African and Indigenous cultures. Navigating the realms of the subconscious in her art, Zéna explores the meaning of identity and liberation for people of color independent of cognitive parameters, and seeks to recontextualize them in environments which honor their histories and project new potentialities for their future. As a student of Jaliyaa, the West African oral and music tradition, and a professional kora player (West African harp), Zéna finds it a natural progression to apply in her own art the same themes of ritual and tradition found in West African string music.

  • Jan 14 Wed

    The World Before Her

    • The World Before Her
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    This award-winning film tells a tale of two Indias. In one, Ruhi Singh is a small-town girl competing in Bombay to win the Miss India pageant. In the other India, Prachi Trivedi is the young, militant leader of a fundamentalist Hindu camp for girls where she preaches violent resistance to Western culture, Christianity and Islam. Moving between these divergent realities, the film creates a lively, provocative portrait of the world's largest democracy at a critical transitional moment — and of two women who hope to shape its future. Q&A with director Nisha Pahuja following the screening. 60 min., English/Hindi with English subtitles, 2012, Canada. Photo credit: Storyline Entertainment

  • Jan 21 Wed

    Who is Dayani Cristal?

    • Dayani Cristal
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM



    Following a team of dedicated staff from the Pima County Morgue in Arizona, director Marc Silver seeks to answer the question “Who is Dayani Cristal”? This award-winning documentary tells the story of a migrant who found himself in the deadly stretch of desert known as “the corridor of death”. Mexican actor and activist Gael Garcia Bernal retraces this man’s steps along the migrant trail in Central America and shows how one life becomes testimony to the tragic results of the U.S. war on immigration. Marc Silver, 85 min., English/Spanish with English subtitles, 2013, UK/Mexico. Photo Credit: Kino Lorber Inc

  • Jan 22 Thu

    Who We Be: The Colorization of America Jeff Chang

    • Jeff Chang
    5:00 PM - 6:00 PM

    Diversity Lecture


    Race. A four-letter word. The greatest social divide in American life, a half-century ago and today. How do Americans see race now? After eras framed by words like “multicultural” and “post-racial,” do we see each other any more clearly? From the dream of integration to the reality of colorization, Jeff Chang examines the cultural history of the idea of racial progress. Jeff Chang is Executive Director of Stanford's Institute for Diversity in the Arts and author of Can’t Stop Won’t Stop: A History of the Hip-Hop Generation.

  • Jan 23 Fri

    The Langston Hughes Project featuring the Ron McCurdy Project

    • LangstonHughes
    8:00 PM - 9:00 PM



    The Langston Hughes Project is a multimedia concert performance of Langston Hughes’s kaleidoscopic jazz poem suite featuring the Ron McCurdy Quartet. Ask Your Mama is a twelve-part epic poem in verse and music that served as Hughes’ social commentary on the struggle for freedom and equality among Africans and African Americans in the 1960s. This multimedia presentation includes spoken word, jazz quartet and videography chronicling the Harlem Renaissance and drawing musical cues from blues and Dixieland, gospel songs, boogie woogie, bebop, “cha cha” and Afro-Cuban mambo music, Jewish liturgy, West Indian calypso, and African drumming. Dr. Ronald C. McCurdy is professor of music in the Thornton School of Music at the University of Southern California (USC) Free event! Limited Seating.

  • Jan 27 Tue

    Mass Deportation and Global Capitalism in the 21st Century Tanya Golash-Boza

    • Tanya Golash-Boza
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Race Matters Series


    In the spring of 2014, President Obama’s administration reached a landmark of over 2 million deportations - more in under six years than the sum total of all deportations prior to 1997. Moreover, the vast majority of deportees are Latin American and Caribbean men. In this presentation, Prof. Golash-Boza will explain these racialized and gendered trends in immigration law enforcement in the context of global capitalism. Dr. Golash-Boza is associate professor of Sociology at the University of California, Merced.

  • Jan 28 Wed

    Maori Boy Genius

    • Ngaa’s family of eight lives
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    What if we could turn back the clock and watch the minds forming of those who would create political zeitgeist shifts in the future? MAORI BOY GENIUS does just that. It is a coming-of-age film profiling future Indigenous leader Ngaa Rauuira railing against his people’s statistics of uneducated youth, 40% of prisoners, and alarming suicide rates. Ngaa’s family of eight lives on a modest income but commits to a $35K Yale University bill with the weighty expectation that Ngaa will be the voice of his people. Pietra Brettkelly, 85 min., English/Maori with English subtitles, 2012, New Zealand.

  • Jan 29 Thu

    Native American Religious Traditions

    • Ines Talamantez
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Religious Literacy Series


    EVENT CANCELED. Join us for the second installment of our Religious Literacy Series aiming to demystify underrepresented religions and people of faith. Prof. Inés Talamantez will lead an intimate discussion on Native American Religious Traditions, analyzing them in a political context while also debunking popular myths that are associated with such traditions. Dr. Talamantez is associate professor of Religious Studies at UCSB. EVENT CANCELED.

  • Jan 31 Sat

    Lily Cai Dance Trio

    • Lily Cai Dance Trio
    8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

    Then and Now


    From the ancient arts of China, to the bold contemporary movement of today, the Lily Cai Chinese Dance Trio performs a beautiful blend of cultural and contemporary dance. Lily Cai's choreography transforms the dance elements, fans, and ribbons of her Shanghai heritage into a captivating performance by her star dancers. Following the performance, Lily Cai will offer insights into her choreography and artistic process. Tickets $5 UCSB Students and Children under 12/$15 general. Contact the A.S. Ticket Office at 805-893-2064 or buy online at (extra fees apply). Limited Seating. Photo credit: Bob Hsiang

  • Feb 01 Sun

    Knick Knack Paddy Whack - Diane Ferlatte

    • Diane Ferlatte
    3:00 AM - 4:00 AM

    Children’s Event


    In this children’s program, Diane Ferlatte will sing, sign, and beat rhythms as she tells folktales, fables, and personal and historical stories, customized for the age of her audience. Along with her musical sidekick Erik Pearson on banjo and guitar, Diane will weave tales from many cultures, while emphasizing stories that have African, Southern, and African American roots. Enhancing her gift in the oral tradition is Diane’s skill in American Sign Language, which she explains and employs in many of her stories.

  • Feb 04 Wed

    Dear White People

    • FILM Dear White People
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    Dear White People is a sly, provocative satire of race relations in the age of Obama. This multiple award-winning film follows a group of African American students as they navigate campus life and racial politics. The unexpected election of activist Samantha White as head of a traditionally black residence hall at a predominantly white college sets up a campus culture war that challenges conventional notions of what it means to be black. Justin Simien, 108 min., English, 2012, USA.

  • Feb 07 Sat

    CJ Jones

    • CJ Jones
    8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

    Worlds Adventurist


    CJ Jones, internationally renowned entertainer, actor, producer, and director, electrifies audiences of Deaf and hearing alike with his imaginative storytelling. His unique blend of spoken English and American Sign Language builds bridges between these two communities. CJ's comical and heartwarming stories about growing up Deaf and traveling the world include lively spectator participation and are sure to captivate the most diverse audiences.

  • Feb 11 Wed

    Through A Lens Darkly: Black Photographers and the Emergence of a People

    • Through A Lens Darkly
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    This award-winning documentary chronicles how African American communities have used the camera as a tool for social change from the invention of photography to the present. It is an epic tale that poetically moves between the present and the past, through contemporary photographers and artists whose images and stories seek to reconcile legacies of pride and shame while giving voice to images long suppressed, forgotten, and hidden from sight. Thomas Allen Harris, 90 min., English, 2014, USA. Photo Credit: Renee Cox

  • Feb 12 Thu

    The Blind Writer: Stories and a Novella

    • Sameer Pandya
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    Join us in celebrating the publication of Sameer Pandya’s first book of stories The Blind Writer: Stories and a Novella, which follows the lives of first and second generation South Asian Americans in contemporary California. All of the characters share a similar sensibility: a sense that immigration is a distant memory, yet an experience that continues to shape their decisions in subtle and surprising ways as they go about the complicated business of everyday living. Pandya will read excerpts from the book and conduct a Q&A session along with Prof. Erin Ninh of the UCSB Dept. of Asian American Studies.

  • Feb 18 Wed

    A Place to Stand

    • A Place To Stand
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    This is the story of Jimmy Santiago Baca’s transformation from a functionally illiterate convict to an award-winning poet, novelist and screenwriter. A Place to Stand is inspired by Jimmy’s memoir of the same name, and tells the story of an extraordinary life that is both inspiring and haunting, simultaneously an indictment of our current criminal justice system and a model of the potential for human transformation. Daniel Glick, 85 min., English, 2014, USA.

  • Feb 19 Thu

    Remapping Race in Suburban California Wendy Cheng

    • Wendy Cheng
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Race Matters Series


    One of the significant shifts in 21st century California and its new, polyethnic majority is greater and more pervasive spatial and class diversity in metropolitan regions. In fact, people of color now constitute the majority of the suburban population in a large number of metropolitan areas nationwide. How is regional racial formation taking shape today in SoCal, and in the US overall? What are ethnoburbs and why are they developing all over? This talk address these trends, exploring the changing dynamics of space, place, and racial formation in the US today. Dr. Wendy Cheng is assistant professor of Justice and Social Inquiry and Asian Pacific American Studies at Arizona State University.

  • Feb 20 Fri

    The Coup

    8:00 PM - 9:00 PM

    Race Matters Series


    The Coup craft a refreshingly unique sound that draws from the past while never sounding anything but futuristic. Consisting of vocalist-writer and activist Boots Riley and a versatile cadre of musicians, The Coup merge danceable beats, punk urgency and the astute social commentary of hip-hop. Tickets $5 UCSB Students and Children under 12/$15 general. Contact the A.S. Ticket Office at 805-893-2064 or buy online at (extra fees apply). Limited Seating.

  • Feb 24 Tue

    American Muslims and the Reform of Islam with Zareena Grewal

    • Zareena Grewal
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM


    This talk is based on ten years of research for Prof. Grewal's book Islam is a Foreign Country, which explores how the question of who defines Islam today is intertwined with American Muslim's identity as a national religious minority and as part of the umma, a global majority. Dr. Grewal is associate professor of American Studies and Religious Studies at Yale University.

  • Feb 25 Wed

    No Más Bebés Por Vida

    • Maria Figueroa and Hurtado nursery
    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    No Más Bebés Por Vida/No More Babies for Life is a work-in-progress film investigating the riveting history of Mexican American women who were sterilized at the Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center during the 1970s. It is a story of blatant injustice, uncommon courage, and activism. This sneak preview of the film chronicles how a group of mothers, young Chicana/o lawyers and activists, and a whistle-blowing doctor stood up to powerful institutions and faced public exposure in the name of justice. Renee Tajima-Peña, 78 min., English and Spanish with English subtitles, 2015, USA. Q&A with director Renee Tajima-Peña and producer Virginia Espino following the screening.

  • Feb 26 Thu

    An Evening of Spoken Word Azure Antoinette

    • Azure Antoinette
    7:30 PM - 8:30 PM

    The UCSB MultiCultural Center in Santa Barbara


    Azure Antoinette is a poet, spoken word artist, and youth and arts advocate whose performance poetry explores the ways social media is reshaping humanity. She is the founder of STUDIO:alchemy, an arts-in-education program serving teen girls, and was featured as one of Forbes magazine’s 100 Most Powerful Women in the World in 2012.

  • Mar 04 Wed

    La Mission

    6:00 PM - 7:00 PM

    Cup of Culture


    Growing up in the Mission district of San Francisco, Che Rivera has always had to be tough to survive. A reformed inmate and recovering alcoholic, Che has worked hard to redeem his life and do right by his pride and joy: his only son, Jes, whom he has raised on his own after the death of his wife. Che's path to redemption is tested, however, when he discovers Jes is gay. To survive his neighborhood, Che has always lived with his fists. To survive as a complete man, he'll have to embrace a side of himself he's never shown. Peter Bratt, 117 min., English, 2009, USA.

  • Mar 05 Thu

    An Evening of Self-Expression

    7:30 PM - 8:30 PM

    MCC in I.V.


    Calling all conscious artists to the stage! The MCC is creating an open mic for anyone to artistically express themselves while educating others on current issues affecting students of color, women, differently abled people, queers, and allies. Come, enjoy and share talents in this safe space for a night of “edutainment.”