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Friday 2/26 - Thursday 3/4

FEBRUARY

By Cara Jepsen

26 FRIDAY Students in the University of Chicago's film studies department put together this weekend's forum, The Activist Camera: Class, Sexuality and Ethnicity in Films of Japan, to highlight new Japanese movies that give a voice to formerly marginalized groups--like Toichi Nakata's Osaka Story, which examines the country's Korean and gay subcultures. The conference kicks off tonight with a reception from 3 to 5 in room 10 of the classics building, 1010 E. 59th. It'll be followed by a conversation with filmmakers Masaki Tamura and Tom Gunning and a screening of the 1985 film Himatsuri (on which Tamura was cinematographer) at 6:30 in room 307 of Cobb Hall, 5811 S. Ellis. Tomorrow's events start at 9 AM with a screening of Osaka Story and Barbara Hammer's Nitrate Kisses. Tamura, Hammer, and Nakata will be part of a panel discussion at 1:30 that also includes scholars Jonathan Mark Hall, Akiko Mizoguchi, and Keith Vincent. Admission is free; call 773-955-5951 for more.

27 SATURDAY The Little Village Environmental Justice Organization started back in 1994, when residents learned that the Board of Education planned to build a school on a polluted site at 31st and Millard. They won that battle, but the group didn't have the time or resources to investigate the construction of two other schools, which, it turns out, were built on land the state EPA never approved. On a more positive note, LVEJO recently learned that the city is giving in to community pressure and will make improvements to a neighborhood park. It'll hold its first annual fund-raiser tonight from 6 to 2 at Calles y Sue–os, 1900 S. Carpenter. A $10 donation at the door includes food, live music, poetry readings, and a DJ. Call 773-762-6991 for more.

28 SUNDAY There are a lot more than 126 bird species in the Chicago area, but that's where Chris C. Fisher and David B. Johnson drew the line in their new book, Birds of Chicago. Descriptions of both common and rare species include where to find them, what they look like, and their character traits, which are compared with human ones. But the authors warn against too much anthropomorphism: "Our interpretations can falsely reflect the complexities of bird life." Johnson, who received an award from the Chicago Audubon Society last year for his service to area birds, will sign copies of the book at 4 at Barnes & Noble, 55 Old Orchard Center in Skokie (847-676-2230).

MARCH

1 MONDAY Chicago in midwinter is a romantic place when viewed through poet Michael Anania's eyes: "Beyond the ragged line of / watertowers and chimneys / and the tufted nylon rose / upholstery city sunset, / the day is making its way / with you into the past." The city comes up a lot in the UIC prof's new collection, In Natural Light, which also contains a CD of the author reading his poems. He'll read and discuss his work tonight at 7 at the Book Stall at Chestnut Court, 811 Elm in Winnetka (847-446-8880). He'll be joined by a former student: poet, novelist, and Chicago native Jeffrey Renard Allen, who will read from his first collection, Harbors and Spirits. It's free.

2 TUESDAY The title of tonight's free seminar at the Sulzer Regional Library says it all: Lawsuits 101--How to Hire and Retain an Attorney. The talk, which is copresented by the Chicago Bar Association, is at 7 at the library, 4455 N. Lincoln. Call 312-554-2010 for more.

After Myra Bradwell passed the Illinois bar in 1869, she applied for a license--but it was denied. She spent the next several years fighting for her right to practice and finally saw the passage of a law preventing gender from being used to bar women from most professions. Bradwell also founded the weekly Chicago Legal News and continued to fight for a woman's freedom to choose her occupation. Tonight historian Annette Baldwin Kolasinski and actor Mary Jewel will portray Bradwell and six other real and fictitious working women (including Pepperidge Farm founder Margaret Rudkin) as part of the Women's History Month program By Necessity By Choice: Women in the Workplace. It takes place from 7:30 to 9 at the College of DuPage's McAninch Arts Center, 425 22nd in Glen Ellyn. Admission is free. Call 630-942-4000.

3 WEDNESDAY In the past, women on the menopausal roller coaster were plied with tranquilizers and antidepressants. These days hormone-replacement therapy is all the rage. But both approaches address only parts of a more complex equation, says homeopath Lynda Chick. Homeopathy, which works by stimulating the body's own healing efforts, "addresses the mental, physical, and emotional all at once," claims Chick. She'll discuss Homeopathy for a Woman's Changing Body at a free lecture tonight at 6 at the Women's Place Resource Center, 30 E. Adams, suite 400. Call 312-456-3000 for more information.

4 THURSDAY In 1991 Daughters of the Dust--Julie Dash's poetic rumination on the turn-of-the-century African-American community of South Carolina's Sea Islands--became the first feature film by an African-American woman to receive national theatrical distribution. Dash took 15 years to complete the movie, which won numerous awards. She and her film are the subject of local filmmaker Yvonne Welbon's 1992 documentary The Cinematic Jazz of Julie Dash, which will screen tonight at 6 at the Chicago Historical Society. Afterward Welbon will discuss her upcoming documentary about other African-American women directors. The event takes place at 7:15 at the society, North and Clark (312-642-4600). Admission is $5, $3 for seniors.

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