| Free and open to the public
Master of None Screening & Roundtable
Thursday, February 18th, 6pm
At Asian Arts Initiative
Aziz Ansari’s hilarious and incisive new series Master of None (Netflix), which explores the personal and professional life of protagonist Dev Shah, a 30-something Asian American actor in New York, has become a critical darling and brought to the fore lots of conversations around representation and access for actors of color in Hollywood. Join us for a screening of three linchpin episodes followed by a roundtable with filmmaker/curator Sara Zia Ebrahimi (Bailout), journalist Sameer Rao (Color Lines), scholar Peter X. Feng (University of Delaware), and educator Arjun Shankar (camra, University of Pennsylvania), as they discuss questions of race, gender, intergenerational conflict, cultural dissonance and representation as they appear in the lives of the show’s diverse characters. Jacqueline Sadashige of the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival and Senior Lecturer at University of Pennsylvania will moderate.
- Sara Zia Ebrahimi is a curator of film, visual art and new media and for over a decade has produced film screenings and exhibits in the Philadelphia area. She has worked as a consultant with Independent Television Service (ITVS) and with individual independent filmmakers on their engagement and outreach campaigns. Currently, she works as a Social Media Specialist at American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). A MFA graduate of Temple University, her own short films have screened internationally and been awarded grants from Chicken & Egg Pictures, Rooftop Films and the Leeway Foundation. In Spring of 2015 she released her first web series, Bailout, which she wrote and directed.
- Dr. Peter X. Feng received his B.A. in American Studies from Yale University and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Film Studies from The University of Iowa. Dr. Feng is the author of Identities in Motion: Asian American Film & Video (2002), and the editor of two collections: Screening Asian Americans (2002) and Chinese Connections(2009). He has published articles in Cinema Journal, Cineaste, Amerasia Journal,Jump Cut, Camera Obscura, and elsewhere. Dr. Feng teaches courses in Theory, Asian American Literature, and Film Studies at theUniversity of Delaware. He is currently working on a book about the Television Industry.
- Sameer Rao is a reporter and blogger for Colorlines, focusing on culture news. As a freelance writer, Sameer’s work has appeared in Stereogum, VICE’s Noisey, Under the Radar, Splitsider, Philadelphia City Paper, WXPN’s The Key, PhillyVoice, the Public School Notebook, and Independent Restaurateur. His writing primarily focuses on music, comedy, theatre, film, social entrepreneurship, race, media, gender, critical theory, pop culture, and where all of those things intersect. Sameer is a graduate of Haverford College and Bryn Mawr Graduate School of Social Work and Social Research, and he has also worked as a non-profit marketing coordinator, case worker, and community organizer. He’s on Twitter at @amancalledsrao.
- Arjun Shankar is a teacher, writer, researcher, and mediamaker, unabashedly curious, and intellectually promiscuous. Having recently completed his phD in Anthropology and Education, he is currently on a three-year postdoctoral fellowship at University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy and Practice, in “Curiosity: A Transdisciplinary Approach”. His research brings together theories in globalization and urban development, literary and digital ethnography, and critical pedagogy. He has collaborated on several participatory film and photography projects and he teaches courses on participatory film, social change, and globalization at Penn.
- Jacqui Sadashige received her BA from Amherst College in English and Fine Arts, an MA in English from Indiana University, and her MA and PhD in Classical Studies from the University of Pennsylvania. Jacqui is currently a Senior Lecturer for the Critical Writing Program at the University of Pennsylvania where she teaches writing seminars that address race and popular culture, with an emphasis on film. Her scholarly interests focus on the ways in which popular culture reflects and refracts our views on race, gender, and species. In addition to teaching and writing about popular culture, Dr Sadashige is also a staff member of the Philadelphia Asian American Film Festival, a local fitness professional, and an Elephant Ambassador for the Save Elephant Foundation in Thailand.