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New England Film Premiere: Noam Chomsky– Internationalism or Extinction
Mon January 11, 2021 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
New England Film Premiere ~ A Fundraiser for Massachusetts Peace Action
“No one but Noam so passionately links the twin, man-made threats to organized human existence–catastrophic climate change and nuclear doomsday machines–and no previous communication of his warnings and challenge to action has presented them so impressively. The brilliantly chosen visuals transform what might otherwise be an almost unbearable recitation of horrific facts–and the institutional failures to move toward changing them–into a presentation with a potential to inspire and motivate public activism which I can hardly imagine being surpassed.- Daniel Ellsberg
On a hazy mid-October afternoon, in 2016, just before that fateful election which would thrust Donald J. Trump into the White House, a large crowd began to gather outside Boston’s historic Old South Church. Soon the crowd would reach beyond 2 blocks. They were all there to attend a “Chomsky Event” – the generic title for the distinctive, large public lecture and conversation that has played out countless times when the distinguished linguist and public intellectual agrees to address an audience. Indeed, the youthful attendees lining the sidewalk were about to engage with Noam Chomsky much as their grandparents would have some 50 years earlier when he helped launch the public questioning of an escalating intervention in Vietnam.
This film captures the essence of the Chomsky event: tables and literature of numerous peace and justice groups outside the lecture hall; the buzz in the room awaiting the start of the program; Noam’s presentation composed in eloquent but spare prose, readily accessible in argument and vocabulary; and the inevitable lengthy question and answer period.
But two things would be different this evening. First, this time the cause to be advanced was not focused on any particular foreign or domestic policy disaster, but rather on the prospects of destroying nearly all species of life on our planet. For in this presentation Noam lays out and interprets for us the parallel developments after World War 2 of the two growing threats to human existence as we know it: global warming and the gathering threat of nuclear war. Director Patrick Jerome transforms the lecture and surrounding events into a professional film by interspersing well-chosen visuals that drive home the significance of the key points that Noam is making.
Second, this “Chomsky event” would be the last of perhaps hundreds of such events Noam would gift to us before he moved permanently out of the Boston area – to start a new teaching career in Arizona!
The film also features our own Angela Kelly and the professional film actor, Wally Shawn – along with various Boston area activists.
As we greet with relief the eventual departure of Donald Trump from the White House, this film is a must see as we prepare to address an ongoing climate catastrophe and the escalating threat of nuclear war under the incoming Biden Administration.
After the film, we will discuss it in small groups.
Sponsored by Mass. Peace Action’s Peace and Climate Working Group. $5 donation to Mass. Peace Action or what you can afford. Register to attend.