Mean Streets: Viewing the Divided City Through the Lens of Film and Television

Sponsored by Center for the Humanities at Washington University and Washington University Libraries

Presented in partnership with Missouri History Museum and The Common Reader

Mean Streets is a program of The Divided City: An Urban Humanities Initiative. With the support of the Mellon Foundation, Washington U.’s Center for the Humanities, in partnership with the College of Architecture and Graduate School of Architecture and Urban Design, is engaged in a four-year initiative called The Divided City, which addresses one of the most persistent and vexing issues in urban studies: segregation.

Bob's Tour: Understanding What We See

Saturday, November 5 at 4:00pm

Washington University graduate Jun Bae profiles Bob Hansman, a beloved architecture professor at the school. In its portrait of a white man with a black son, the film provides an intimate look at Hansman and his insights into segregated St. Louis. The film follows... Read more

Bogdan's Journey

Sunday, November 13 at 3:00pm

“Bogdan’s Journey” is a story about conflict and reconciliation, about contemporary Poland and its Jewish past. Kielce, Poland, was the site of Europe’s last Jewish pogrom. In 1946, townspeople killed 40 Holocaust survivors seeking shelter in a downtown building,... Read more

Camden: Love/Hate

Saturday, November 12 at 3:00pm

“Camden: Love/Hate” follows six teenagers from Camden, N.J., as they document the story of their city, from the glory days of the postwar boom to today’s violent and fraught reality. After learning filmmaking skills at a last-chance high school, the Camden Center... Read more

Chi-Raq

Friday, November 11 at 7:00pm

Spike Lee's modern-day adaptation of the ancient Greek play “Lysistrata” by Aristophanes, “Chi-Raq” is set against the backdrop of gang violence in Chicago. Beautiful Lysistrata (Teyonah Parris) is in love with aspiring rapper Demtrius “Chi-Raq” Dupree (Nick... Read more

Doc Shorts: Black Lives Matter

Saturday, November 12 at 7:00pm

Gentlemen of Vision

Thursday, November 10 at 7:30pm

In the world of competitive stepping, the Gentlemen of Vision are the ones to beat. Offstage, the teen members of GOV — as the team is known — are growing up in the struggling working-class suburbs of St. Louis. Although GOV is based in Riverview Gardens, its... Read more

Killer of Sheep

Sunday, November 6 at 1:30pm

SLIFF honors legendary filmmaker Charles Burnett with a Lifetime Achievement Award and screens a pair of his finest works — “Killer of Sheep” and the new restoration of “To Sleep with Anger” (see separate film listing). Burnett’s “Killer of Sheep” focuses on... Read more

Milwaukee 53206

Sunday, November 13 at 12:00pm

The stories that “Milwaukee 53206” tells reflect a common way of life for millions of households across the nation — the tragic result of a uniquely American era of mass incarceration. The United States now has the most prisoners of any nation in the world, both... Read more

Night School

Saturday, November 5 at 1:00pm

“Night School” examines adult education and the dropout epidemic plaguing inner-city America. The film provides an inside look at a cutting-edge high school located in one of the most impoverished neighborhoods in America and the brave students who attend it.... Read more

No Crossover: The Trial of Allen Iverson

Sunday, November 6 at 7:00pm

On Valentine's Day 1993, 17-year-old Bethel High School basketball star Allen Iverson was bowling in Hampton, Va., with five high-school friends. It was supposed to be an ordinary evening, but it became a night that defined Iverson's young life. A quarrel soon... Read more

The Peacemaker

Saturday, November 5 at 7:30pm

This inspiring documentary profiles international peacemaker Padraig O'Malley, who helps make peace for others but struggles to find it for himself. The film captures Padraig's isolated life in Cambridge, Mass., and follows him over five years to some of the most... Read more

The Pruitt-Igoe Myth

Sunday, November 6 at 12:00pm

It began as a housing marvel. Two decades later, it ended in rubble. But what happened to those caught in between? “The Pruitt-Igoe Myth” tells the story of the transformation of the American city in the decades after World War II, through the lens of the infamous... Read more

Southern Rites

Saturday, November 12 at 12:00pm

“Southern Rites” highlights the entrenched racial divides and vestiges of racism that stubbornly persist in Montgomery County, Ga. The film follows filmmaker Gillian Laub as she returns to Mount Vernon, where she once photographed the town’s segregated proms. When... Read more

Two Trains Runnin’

Sunday, November 13 at 6:00pm

“Two Trains Runnin’ — featuring the music of Gary Clark Jr. — both pays tribute to a pioneering generation of musicians and cuts to the heart of our present moment, offering a crucial vantage from which to view the evolving dynamics of race in America. In June of... Read more