The Center’s Media and Idea Lab (MIL) consists of a series of courses and programs that employ media, particularly visual media, as a mode of inquiry. Key in this effort is the development of a “lab” environment in which students, faculty, and visitors can jointly participate in trying out ideas and creating knowledge communities through media. Students can also develop different types of projects, including curatorial, video, and web.
The MIL is a partnership with the Digital Humanities Center (DHC). The DHC provide space for postproduction, instruction on editing and related software and equipment. The DHC also serves as co-host for some public programming and provides space for meetings, screenings and other activities.
Presently, MIL’s components include student and faculty projects, public programming, and new courses. Among the courses that CSER is currently developing are: Race and Visual Culture; Politics and Practice of Digital Media, and Video as Inquiry; which will be taught for the first time in the spring of 2014.
The first completed project is “Small City, Big Change,” a video and policy brief released in collaboration with Hispanics in Philanthropy today. The video shows how the Latino leadership of Chelsea, Massachusetts’s smallest city, proved to be decisive in the historical passing of the state’s Transgender Equal Rights Bill in 2012. Read more
AlterNative Education is a video-in-progress documenting the work of Columbia undergraduates as they examine reservation drop-out rates in the classroom, develop alternative curricula to increase retention, and create education opportunities in three New Mexico reservations. Read more
The Media Working Group is composed of eleven graduate students whose academic research may be portrayed using film, sound an/or performance, among other media. Read more
The What is Justice? project is a two-semester long film series that will explore issues of incarceration via screenings and post-screening discussions of documentaries and feature films. Read more
Inaugural MIL public programming includes The Raging 70s, the Gallery at the Center’s current exhibition, a photographic display that features twenty black and white images of Latino public figures, significant events and everyday life. The exhibit is open to the public trough May 15 2014. Read more
The Media and Idea Lab will also feature a distinguished speaker during the academic year. Read more