Mara Ahmed Films

The Oakland Asian Cultural Center will rescreen filmmaker, writer, artist and social activist Mara Ahmed’s films

April 19 & 20, 2018

The Muslims I Know

A documentary written and produced by Mara Ahmed

Thursday, April 19, 2018
Film Starts: 7:30pm

Doors Open: 7:15pm / Event: 7:30pm – 9:30pm

The events of 9/11 have created much interest in Islam and Muslims. Mainstream media have responded to this demand for information with generalizations and stereotypes. America’s community of Muslims longs to be a part of the discourse. THE MUSLIMS I KNOW is a documentary that gives them a chance to be heard and understood through dialogue with non-Muslim Americans.

—– The Muslims I Know (2008) 58 minutes

A Thin Wall

A documentary written, directed and co-produced by Mara Ahmed

Friday, April 20, 2018
Film starts: 7pm

Doors Open 6:45pm / Event: 7pm to 9:30pm

A THIN WALL is a documentary about memory, history and the possibility of reconciliation. It focuses on the Partition of India in 1947, but derives lessons that remain urgently relevant today. The film is shot on both sides of the border, in India and Pakistan. The film is written and directed by Mara Ahmed and co-produced by Surbhi Dewan. Both filmmakers are descendants of families torn apart by partition.

—– A Thin Wall (2015) 1h 5 minutes


Free and Open to the Public

Both film screenings will be followed by Q & A with Mara Ahmed via Skype

Currently on Exhibition:

‘This Heirloom’

A Graphic Collage Exhibition by Mara Ahmed

EXHIBITION DATES:

FEBRUARY 7 – APRIL 26, 2018

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Riding with the Wind – A Book Talk with Monona Yin & Grant Din

The Oakland Asian Cultural Center and Eastwind Books of Berkeley Present:
Riding with the Wind: Three Generations of My Family in China

Sunday, May 6, 2018

Doors Open: 2:00PM / Book Talk: 2:30PM / Q&A: 3:30PM

In her new memoir, Riding with the Wind: Three Generations of My Family in China, Fay Hoh Yin paints an indelible portrait of her unusual family as the imperial era ends and war with Japan begins. Her mother is among the first women in centuries to escape foot binding and arranged marriage. She then uses her newfound freedom to study physical education in the US in the early 1920s, returning to China to become a pioneering educator for the next seventy years.

Yin later comes to the U.S. herself, marries a fellow foreign student, and starts a family. Tragically, she loses her husband at age thirty-seven, but forges a unique partnership with her widowed mother-in-law that far outlasts either of their marriages. Yin’s stories of daring, hardship, and perseverance are deeply personal, yet illuminate the changing roles of women in 20th century China and the United States.

The author’s daughter Monona Yin, who edited and published the book, will read passages and describe the creative process with her mother. She and moderator Grant Din will discuss the challenge of preserving and documenting first-generation immigrant women’s stories.

FAY HOH YIN was born in Beijing in 1932 and grew up during the Sino-Japanese and Chinese Civil Wars. She and her family fled thousands of miles to escape the chaos, finally settling in Taiwan in 1949. She later came to the U.S. and earned a Ph.D. in biochemistry from the University of Wisconsin. She retired in 1991 after working for twenty-six years as a virologist for the DuPont Company in Wilmington, Delaware. Unfortunately, due to frail health, the author will not be present.

MONONA YIN is Director of Impact and Learning at Borealis Philanthropy. From 2004-17, she directed capacity building at the Four Freedoms Fund, a national donor collaborative that has invested over $100 million in the immigrant rights movement. As an activist, Monona is a co-founder and former staff director of CAAAV Organizing Asian Communities in New York City. She graduated from Yale and lives in Brooklyn with her husband and daughter.

GRANT DIN has been a community and nonprofit leader for over 30 years, most recently with the Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation and Asian Neighborhood Design. He now provides consulting on resource development, research, writing, and related tasks. Grant is also a consultant for genealogy and family history research. He holds a BA from Yale and an MA from Claremont Graduate University, and lives in Oakland with his family.

Oakland Asian Cultural Center 388 Ninth Street, Ste 290 Oakland, CA 94607

Free and Open to the Public

Suggested Donations: $5 to $20

OACC is supported by the Akonadi Foundation, the San Francisco Foundation, City of Oakland, Hewlett Foundation, Asian Pacific Fund, City of Oakland Cultural Funding Program, Comerica Bank, Five Arts Fund, and individual donors.

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The Chinese Exclusion Act

Film / Dialogue / Workshop

Saturday, May 12 | 10:00 AM — 1:00 PM

This May, during Asian Pacific American Heritage Month, APISA and the Sanctuary Schools Taskforce along with Chinatown community organizations and the Center for Asian American Media will host a screening of the new PBS documentary, The Chinese Exclusion Act, a groundbreaking documentation of largely forgotten history of the anti-Chinese movement across the Western United States from the mid-1850s to World War II.

APISA will lead a community discussion afterward with Professor Greg Mark whose family fought anti-Chinese laws in Oakland Chinatown in the 1930s, and OUSD teachers will lead a Curriculum Workshop sharing classroom activities our district is using to engage students this year, which will be launched nationally this year. Please join us for this unique opportunity to better understand our country’s history of immigration policy within today’s political context.

For more information about the OUSD Sanctuary Schools “Dream, Resist & Educate” Event Series: https://www.ousd.org/Page/17294

For more information on the Asian Pacific Islander Student Achievement Initiative: www.ousd.org/apisa

This event is generously supported by War Taxes Redirected by the People’s Life Fund and the SF Foundation Rapid Response Fund, and co-sponsored by the Chinese American Citizens Alliance, OUSD Office of Equity, OUSD Sanctuary Schools Taskforce, Oakland Asian Cultural Center, Center for Asian American Media, and OUSD’s History Department & Teachers.


 

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Chinese Ancestry Day

Presented by the Oakland Asian Cultural Center & California Genealogical Society

May 26, 2018

$60 General Admission
$40 for CGS Members

Save the date of Saturday, May 26 as a special day of learning the fundamentals of genealogy tailored for Chinese families. Sponsored by the California Genealogical Society and the Oakland Asian Cultural Center; and The Angel Island Immigration Station Foundation, and The California Historical Society.

This event will cover basic steps to build your Chinese family tree. Time will be allotted for sharing stories and problem solving.

Featured speakers:

Felicia Lowe:
Keynote including excerpts from her film Chinese Couplets

Grant Din:
The Importance of Family Stories.

Marisa Louie Lee:
Chinese Exclusion Act Records at the National Archives.

John Wong (Friends of Roots/Root Plus):
A Pilgrimage to Your Ancestral Village.

Lunch from Peony Restaurant is included in the registration.

Oakland Asian Cultural Center
388 Ninth Street, Ste 290 
Oakland, CA 94607

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Two Languages / One Community: Free Literary Workshop Series

Over the course of three workshops, participants will be guided by the authors through structured exercises, individually, and in small groups, with the goal of supporting participants as they chronicle their experiences through creative storytelling. Participants will write an original short poem or memory, which will be translated into English and Chinese, published, and shared at a public culminating event at OACC in May. The workshops will be conducted at OACC on Fridays 2/23, 3/23, and 4/13 from 1-2p, with optional time from 2-3p for participants to continue writing or working together. Workshops are limited to ten participants who can commit to attending the entire series, and who would ideally be willing to share their work both verbally at a culminating event at OACC in May 2018, and in print.

Sign-up online at Here or call 510-637-0455. Registration deadline noon on Wed. 2/21/18.

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San Francisco Chamber Orchestra Presents: Lift Every Voice

San Francisco Chamber of Orchestra’s sixth collaboration with the talented young singers of the Piedmont East Bay Children’s Choir. This program of favorite American folk songs will have you and your family singing and clapping along. Rising young tenor Kevin Gino makes a guest appearance, bringing a touch of class(ical) to our concert stage.

San Francisco Chamber Orchestra’s family concerts provide children with an engaging, educational and participatory introduction to classical music. SFCO brings the gift of music free-of-charge into communities where people live, making classical music accessible to everyone. At approximately 45 minutes in length, these fun and engaging performances are perfect for ages 6 through 12.


Admission is free to all!

Sunday, March 18, 2018 at 12 PM at The Oakland Asian Cultural Center

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Finding Kukan: A Film by Robin Lung 

Feature Documentary

Followed by Q&A w / Director & Producer, Robin Lung
Presented by: The Oakland Asian Cultural Center

Co-sponsored by:
CAAM – Center for Asian American Media
CACA – Chinese American Citizens Alliance – Oakland Lodge

Saturday, March 31, 2018 

Doors open 6:30pm / Film Screens 7:00pm

Q&A 8:15 – 9pm

About the Film: Filmmaker Robin Lung investigates the case of Li Ling-Ai, the un-credited female producer of KUKAN, a landmark color film that revealed atrocities in World War II China to audiences around the world.

KUKAN has the rare honor of being the first ever American feature documentary to receive an Academy Award in 1942.

Lost for decades, Lung discovers a badly damaged film print of KUKAN, and pieces together the untold, inspirational tale of the two renegades behind the making of it – Chinese American playwright Li Ling-Ai and cameraman Rey Scott.

(75 Minutes, Feature Documentary, In English and Mandarin)

Free and Open to the Public 
Suggested Donation: sliding scale $5 – $20

 
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