Join us for a special screening of the acclaimed documentary Iron Ladies of Liberia, which chronicles the first year in office of Ellen Johnson Sirleaf, Africa’s first elected female head of state. After the film, Prexy Nesbitt, speaker and educator on Africa, foreign policy, and racism, will lead the post-screening discussion.
About the film:
After fourteen years of civil war, Liberia is a nation ready for change. On January 16, 2006, Ellen Johnson-Sirleaf was inaugurated President, following a hotly contested election which she won with the overwhelming support of women across Liberia. Since taking office she has appointed other extraordinary women to leadership positions in all areas of government, including the Police Chief and the ministers of Justice, Commerce and Finance. Can the first female Liberian president, backed by other powerful women, bring sustainable democracy and peace to such a devastated country? Iron Ladies of Liberia gives behind-the-scenes access to President Sirleaf’s first year in government, providing a unique insight into the workings of a newly elected African cabinet. It was directed by Siatta Scott Johnson and Daniel Junge. The film runs approximately 57 minutes.
About the speaker:
Prexy Nesbitt is a Chicago-based activist, writer and educator, whose work over the past four decades has been connecting freedom-loving peoples in Africa, Europe, and North America and strengthening progressive political and social movements across the continents. A graduate of Antioch College, he worked toward a Ph.D. in African History at the University of Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania and at Northwestern and Columbia Universities. He was appointed by the President of Mozambique in 1987 to act as a special representative to the United States and Canada. Mr. Nesbitt is a former union organizer who recently worked in Southern Africa for the AFL-CIO in conjunction with various Southern African trade unions. Additionally, Mr. Nesbitt has worked as a teacher and administrator, on both the college and high school levels, for the last forty years at various schools in and around Chicago. He currently teaches African history at Columbia College and is a diversity and multiculturalism consultant for the Chicago Teachers Center and at various private and public schools in the Chicago area.
This event is part of The Public Square at the IHC‘s Know More: Conversations That Matter series. The Know More series is designed to bridge the gap between the arts and social issues that are of current concern to Chicago’s Englewood and Humboldt Park communities. Chicago Public Radio is the media sponsor. Programming for Know More has included visits from hip hop scholar Jeff Chang; Africana Studies scholar William Santiago-Valles; journalist Laura Washington; performer Will Power; sociologist Mary Pattillo storyteller Ramon Lopez; and poet Elizabeth Alexander.
Free and open to the public. For more information, call 312.422.5580.