Passport to Mexico and Central America
Schedule of Events - Fall 2007

UCO STUDENTS: Attend ten events and become eligible to enter the drawing for three free credit hours.

Passports are now available in the office of Modern Languages in Thatcher Hall or the office of University Relations, Lillard Administration Building room 201. You may also pick up a passport at any of the August or September events.

ALAS, the Association of Latin American Students, will host several events, including four Movie Nights--August 30, September 13 and 27, and October 11, all movies at 6:30 in room 120 of the Communications Building--and two Latin Nights on October 12 and November 2. There may also be a traditional game night in early November; watch this page or contact ALAS for details.

August 28, Pegasus Theater 3:30 p.m.: "Luis Buñuel: A Surrealist Exile in Mexico." This lecture by Al LaValley is the kick-off for the Buñuel film festival that will run through September. Dr. LaValley directed the Film and Television Studies Department at Dartmouth College for 15 years and he's been teaching film studies since the 1960s. This semester, he will teach a special one-time seminar on Mexican Cinema here on campus. Don't miss this fascinating introduction to the works of one of Mexico's most important cultural treasures! This event is jointly sponsored by Passport UCO and the College of Liberal Arts Dean's Lecture Series.

September 4, 11, 18, and 25, and October 2, Pegasus Theater 3:30 p.m.: Film Festival: The Wonderful Horrible Mexican Films of Luis Buñuel. The films, in order, will be Los olvidados (1950; 88 min), Susana (1951; 80 min), Subida al cielo ( Ascent to Heaven / Mexican Bus Ride ) (1951; 85 min), El bruto (1952; 83 min), and Ilusión viaja por tranvía (Illusion Travels by Streetcar) (1953; 82 min).

September 12, ground floor of the Chambers Library, 1:00 p.m. "People of the Serpent & Jaguar: A look at the symbolic links in the art of PreColumbian cultures from Mexico to Peru." Dr. Bill Hommel of UCO's Department of Art will introduce the collection of pre-Columbian artifacts that will be on display in the library during the Passport semester. These works of pottery, metal and stone from Mexico, Costa Rica, Peru and Ecuador, dating from 900 to 1300 C.E., include a 900 CE Mayan 3-legged vase with painted symbolic designs, a 3-legged bowl with incised designs from Costa Rica, a 1300 CE Chimu miniature copper and silver mask, and a 1200 CE Stone figure from Ecuador. Find out what to look for and what these pieces tell us about the history of the Americas' vanished civilizations.
This presentation is co-sponsored by the Friends of the Library, and will be followed by refreshments in the lobby.

September 20, Lakeside Café (internet café and coffee shop), Nigh University Center, 9 p.m. Join us at the big-screen TV as we kick back and watch the Globetrekker crew travel through Nicaragua and Costa Rica.

September 27, Pegasus Theater 7:30 p.m.: Performance of traditional dances by dance troupe Los Niños de España y Mexico. The dances will be accompanied by commentary in both English and Spanish on cultural context, costumes, and other details that will deepen understanding of the dances' significance. This event is co-sponsored by the Dean of Liberal Arts.

October 3, Pegasus Theater 2:00-3:15 p.m.: Brian Hearn, film curator at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art, will return to our campus to lead discussion about Recycled Life, a 20-minute film that was nominated for this year's Academy Award for Best Short Documentary. The film examines the lives of individuals who make their homes and livelihoods in the sprawling garbage dumps of Guatemala City. Eye-opening!

October 8, Pegasus Theater 7:30-9:00 p.m.: "Kings, Sacrifice, and Slaves: Isotopic evidence from Mexico and the Maya." T. Douglas Price, an archaeological chemist from the University of Wisconsin, will give a presentation on his work with the remains of preliterate Mesoamerican civilizations. By studying the bones of prominent Mayans, particularly the ruler Yax K'uk Mo, Professor Price has discovered that the ancient Mayans were a lot more mobile and more sophisticated in their trading and travel practices than has been hitherto suspected. Dr. Price was the subject of the article "Written in Bone" in the May/June 2007 issue of Archaeology magazine. This event is jointly sponsored by Passport UCO and the College of Math and Science.

October 10, Wellness Center room 127 3:30 p.m.: "Poverty in Eden: Costa Rica, region of contrasts." Chris Price of World Neighbors has an MFA in International Studies with a concentration in Latin American Studies, and he was with the Peace Corps in Costa Rica some years ago. His primary area of expertise is reproductive health and rights, and he spent several years as a consultant for the HIV/AIDS alliance. He will discuss his experiences, and current health care concerns--both among the locals, and what you ought to consider yourself if you are thinking about taking a trip abroad in the region.
This presentation is co-sponsored by the Wellness Center. Healthy refreshments will be provided!

October 24, Pegasus Theater 7:00-9:30 p.m.: Movie, El Norte. This classic film follows the story of two siblings who flee government persecution in 1980's Guatemala and seek to build a new life in the United States. This film is scheduled to complement the October 29 presentation by Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, since she will be speaking about the same general time frame and similar situations... but a very different effect on the United States.

October 25, Business building room 110, 3:00-4:15 p.m.: Dr. Tomas de los Santos of UCO’s Economics department will speak about "The Economic Transformation of Mexico."

October 26, Liberal Arts room 225, 11:00-11:50 a.m.: Dr. Diana Pardo of UCO’s Modern Languages department will speak about her seminar, "Literature of War and Revolution: Mexico, Nicaragua, and Guatemala," and the research she conducted last summer, interviewing the survivors of violent revolutions in Central America.

October 29, Pegasus Theater 7:00-8:00 p.m.: author Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz will discuss her experiences as a political activist in Nicaragua during the Contra wars in the early 1980s, followed by a signing of her book, Blood on the Border. This event is jointly sponsored by Passport UCO and the College of Liberal Arts Speaker Series.

November 1, UCO Jazz Lab 7:00-9:00 p.m.: Day of the Dead celebration. The Passport program teams up with the Department of Modern Languages' annual talent show for food, fun, and fiesta on this traditional Mexican holiday.

November 15-17, 7:30 p.m., November 18, 2 p.m., Mitchell Hall Theater: Conviction, an original, premiere production by award-winning student playwright Elford Alley, based on a true story. A routine traffic stop goes terribly wrong in a Texas border town, leading to shots fired and Deputy Sheriff Eduard Gonzalez going to prison for violating the civil rights of a convicted drug smuggler. After three years he is released a changed man. Broken and with his life in shambles, he struggles with what action to take against the man he feels put him away. A special Passport preview, free of charge, may be attended at the final rehearsal on November 14. Otherwise, student tickets are $4.

    On November 15 at 9:30 p.m., the American Democracy Project will sponsor a panel discussion after the performance. Meredith Scott, American Democracy Project student coordinator, will serve as moderator. Panelists include Diana Pardo, Glenn Freeman and Elaine Bartgis. They will speak, and answer questions from the audience. This discussion event is free of charge and you may attend whether or not you attended the Thursday evening performance. Students who attend both the Thursday performance and the panel discussion will receive credit for two separate Passport events.

November 19, Mitchell Hall Theater 7:30 p.m.: Songs of Central America and Mexico, performed by UCO's voice faculty.

November 28, Pegasus Theater 7:00 p.m.: UCO's Fashion Marketing students present a fashion show focusing on traditional Central American and Mexican attire, and contemporary clothing inspired by it.

November 30, Pegasus Theater 10:00-11:00 a.m.: Publication Release and Passport Drawing
New Plains Review: Central Passport. Find out about the College of Liberal Arts' literary journal, New Plains Review, and this special issue that focuses on the Passport to Central America and Mexico program.
Authors' Reception and Book Sale in the Pegasus Lobby, 11:00-12:00 noon

  Please check out our past Passport UCO events pages:

India - 2005

Egypt - 2006

Italy - 2004