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'Old Stone' @Pickford Film Center 4/11 + Q&A 4/13

Posted on: Thursday, April 6, 2017 - 2:48pm

Topic(s): Events

Masters of Asian Cinema: Old Stone, April 11 @Pickford Film Center + Q&A with Director Johnny Ma April 13

The next Masters of Asian Cinema film is Johnny Ma’s 2016 debut feature, Old Stone.  It will screen on Tuesday, April 11 at 6:30pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street in Bellingham.
Ma began his film career as a documentarian and studied and worked extensively throughout the US and Canada. Old Stone, winner of the Academy of Canadian Cinema & Television's Best First Feature Award,  is an assured first feature, often described as a “neo-noir.”
The story features a taxi driver named  Lao Shi who accidentally hits a motorcyclist.  When emergency services are slow to respond, he tries to help out by taking the victim to a nearby hospital, unleashing a series of terrifying consequences.  
Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters  of Asian Cinema series continues the rich tradition that began with the Masters of Japanese Cinema series, one of the Pickford's longest running and most popular series. Each film in the Masters of Asian Cinema series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators.Old Stone will be introduced by Baozhen Luo, who teaches in WWU's Sociology Department and who introduced Jia Zhangke's Mountains May Depart for the series last November.
Additionally, Professor Luo and  series curator Western Washington University librarian Jeff Purdue have been in contact with Ma, and as a complement to this screening, Ma will be available for a  Q&A session via Skype on Thursday, April 13 at 4pm at WWU in Miller Hall 152.  Ma is currently in Beijing doing pre-production on his next feature, and is looking forward to talking with students and others about Old Stone.  
For more information about these events or about the Masters of Asian Cinema series, please contact

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Writing Instruction Support Opportunities April 6 / May 5

Posted on: Monday, April 3, 2017 - 11:23am

Topic(s): Updates, Events, Resources

Upcoming Writing Instruction Support Events

Avoiding Assignments from Hell  Join us for refreshments and discussion on the topic of problem assignments at the second "Research-Writing Happy Hour," Thursday, April 6 from 4-5pm in Western Libraries Special Collections, (Wilson Library 6th Floor). Guest speakers will include the Director of Writing in the Hacherl Research & Writing Studio, Roberta Kjesrud, and a panel of student Studio assistants. Together they will provide composite examples of problem writing assignments that have come through the Studio at WWU, such as:
o   The Long and the Short (What's the Goldilocks length?)
o   The Angry Diatribe (Where's the line between guidance and venting?)
o   The Sorry, Not This Term (How far should a challenge go? What can you do when your discipline demands extensive original research, but you only have a ten-week quarter in which to assign and evaluate it?)
Reading & Discussion: Roots of Rhetoric and Writing in the Liberal Arts This event takes place off-campus at Aslan Brewery (this is a child-friendly location--if you have kids, bring them along!) on Friday April 21, Friday, May 5 4:15-5:15pm.  Join us for an informal discussion of some of the oldest writing on rhetoric and education, Gorgias's "The Encomium of Helen" and "On What is Not or On Nature," and together we’ll consider questions like:
o   What purpose should the study of rhetoric and writing serve in a liberal arts curriculum?
o   Is writing a practical skill? A philosophical discipline for the pursuit of wisdom? 

RSVPs for both events are appreciated but not required. Please send comments and questions to Julie Dugger, Director of Writing Instruction Support.  Unable to come, but interested in the topic? Click on the link for more:

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Spring Intersession Hours

Posted on: Tuesday, March 14, 2017 - 6:00pm

Topic(s): Updates

Western Libraries will be open Monday through Friday during the intersession, March 18th through March 27th, from 8:30am to 4:30pm, closed weekends. The Map Collection will be closed from March 18th through March 26th, re-opening on March 27th. The Wilson North entrance to the library will also be closed during this period, but the library will remain accessible via the Haggard Hall entrance.

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Masters of Asian Cinema: 'Creepy'

Posted on: Thursday, March 9, 2017 - 11:28am

Topic(s): Updates, Events

'Creepy' @the Pickford Film Center, March 14

The next Masters of Asian Cinema film is the 2016 feature Creepy.  It will screen on Tuesday, March 14 at 6:30pm at Pickford Film Center, 1318 Bay Street in downtown Bellingham.  

Before his 2008 film Tokyo Sonata introduced new audiences to his work, Kurosawa Kiyoshi was known as a horror director. His films were not ordinary horror films as they focused more on the complex psychological states of his characters than on delivering visceral thrills. Kurosawa’s current film is something of a return to his roots.

Creepy is the story of a police detective who is an expert in the psychology of serial killers. After a traumatic incident, he leaves the force, becomes a university professor of criminal psychology, and moves to a new neighborhood with his wife where he begins to make connections with a cold case and a new neighbor, both with deeply unsettling implications.

Co-sponsored by Western Libraries and the Pickford Film Center, the Masters of Japanese Cinema series was one of the Pickford's longest running and most loved series, featuring some of the best films in World Cinema with movies that span both decades and genres. The Masters of Asian Cinema series continues that rich tradition.

Each film in the series begins with an introduction from select speakers including local professors, artists, and educators. Creepy will be introduced by Colleen Laird in Western Washington University’s Department of Modern and Classical Languages.  Laird’s Ph.D. is in Japanese film studies, with a research focus on Japanese women directors.  

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Jonathan Evison: The Art & Craft of Writing

Posted on: Wednesday, March 8, 2017 - 8:10am

Topic(s): Updates, Events

Whatcom READS! hosts Jonathan Evison at WWU

The 2017 Whatcom READS! selection is The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving, a big-hearted and inspired novel by author Jonathan Evison. As part of the programming for WhatcomREADS!, Evison will be at Western Washington University on Saturday, March 11 from 2-3pm for “The Art and Craft of Writing” event. This event takes place in Western Libraries Reading Room (Wilson Library 4th Floor Central), and is free and open to the public.

Jonathan Evison is an American writer known for his novels All About Lulu (winner of the Washington State Book Award), West of Here (New York Times bestseller, winner of the Pacific Northwest Booksellers Award and the Booklist Editor’s Choice Award) and The Revised Fundamentals of Caregiving (currently in development for film).

In 2009 and 2011, Evison was nominated by the American Book Association as “Most Engaging Author.” In his teens, Evison was a founding member and frontman of the Seattle punk band March of Crimes, which included future members of Pearl Jam and Soundgarden. Born in San Jose, California, he now lives on an island in western Washington with his family. His latest novel, This Is Your Life, Harriet Chance!, was published in September 2015.

Whatcom READS! is a county-wide program that encourages everyone to read and discuss the same book. Each year, a new book is selected by Whatcom READS organizers. Community members are encouraged to read or listen to the book, share it with family, friends and neighbors, and participate in programs and special events that follow the themes in the book selection. Each series culminates with a visit by the author of the selected book, who makes numerous free-of-charge presentations at locations throughout the county.

Whatcom READS! is organized by all the public and academic libraries in Whatcom County and  community partner, Village Books, with significant funding from Friends of the Bellingham Public Library and Whatcom County Library Foundation, and support from other local businesses and organizations.