SSMF 2022: “Pause”


While resistance is often associated with action, pausing and refusal can often be effective strategies to communicate dissent, struggle, or a need for reform. The works on this panel all engage pause as an element of resistance and reflection, with a desire for eventual change.

Moderated by Roopa Vasudevan, University of Pennsylvania
Saturday, March 26, 3:00 PM — 4:20 PM Eastern


Michael Macdonald
MacEwan University

And,And,And… is a collaborative improvisational film. All of the protagonists were involved in the making of the film in a variety of ways. In front and behind the camera they participated in writing and performing every scene. The main protagonist provided translation, and were included in the editing process. This approach which the filmmaker calles Cineworlding, extends the ethnographic field into media, drawing in music videos and news broadcast and composes scenes using digital cinema, super8 mm film, and mobile phone cameras. This approach attempts to think-feel affect, event, and refrain in cine-ethnomusicology. Sharing much with visual ethnography, cineworlding emphasizes affect and event within the profilmic world, and studies the movement of music’s affects, through events and refrains into audience reception. This is an approach to research-creation that has the potential to contribute to audiovisual ethnographic methods.

Michael B. MacDonald is an award-winning filmmaker and associate professor of music at the MacEwan University Faculty of Fine Arts and Communications in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. His films have been screened in more than 40 film festivals and he has won documentary and experimental film awards. Michael has published three books on music and youth culture and his next two books will focus on cinematic research-creation: CineWorlding: scenes of cinematic research-creation (Bloomsbury) and Make your own damn film! [diwyf]. Films and music videos are freely available at

Why We Are

Karston Singleton and Nyzeema Presley
High School Philadelphia District

Behavioral Health. One with it, one without. What’s really the difference?

Karston Singleton and Nyzeema Presley are Philadelphia-area high school students and participants in Scribe Video Center’s Documentary History Project for Youth – an annual after-school, weekend and summertime digital media production workshop where youth participants create short documentary films as a way to explore some aspect of the social, political and cultural history of Philadelphia.

Obra Suspendida

Bonella Holloway

Obra Suspendida is a soundscape of Ixcotel Penitentiary in Oaxaca, Mexico. The men taught the artist to weave and she recorded their exchanges. A bag was weaved following the technique used by the inmates to make the baskets sold to fulfill their basic needs whilst incarcerated. The soundscape masks any intelligible conversations, in order to censor its contents as a critical look on the silence and invisibility that englobes an incarcerated person’s status and situation.

The analogy that originally triggered this piece was the hum of the fridge. A drone that is so permanent we forget it, until it stops. This basic observation echoed with thoughts I had had, and articles that I have read on social exclusions. Incarceration is a form of social exclusion, and works in such a way that people who are largely struggling with their social status already are removed from society.

Bonella Holloway is a video and performance artist based in south west France. She studied at the IsdaT in Toulouse and has since taken part in a series of residencies in Leipzig and Oaxaca, showed works in New York’s Flux Factory and in Oaxaca. She is currently writing a documentary.

Divided Attention

Laura Deutch

Nicole Mendez
Education Advocate

Stephanie Ramones
Contigo Photography

Stacy Mandel
BIG Mindfulness & Meditation

Divided Attention is a feature length documentary film which follows 4 students from Toby Farms, a public middle school in the historically underfunded Chester Upland School District, as they learn and practice mindfulness amidst the COVID-19 pandemic, the school to prison pipeline, and threat of charter takeover.

Their challenges and growth are contrasted by the unstable support and funding inequities that have plagued Chester for decades. A call-to-action, the film looks at how the history of inequitable school funding has impacted the community and how organizers are fighting back.

The film is produced by the Delaware County Advocacy & Resource Organization and PhillyCAM.

Nicole Mendez is an Education Advocate, the Executive Director of Divided Attention and Program Coordinator for ESEL, a combatting the school to prison pipeline project, funded by the PADDC. She is the creative director who sought out partnership with PhillyCAM for help using media and storytelling to amplify the voice of the children at Toby Farms School.

Stacey Mandel is the founder of BIG Mindfulness & Meditation. She is a certified professional mindfulness teacher (CMT-P) with the International Mindfulness Teachers Association, and a certified “Trauma-Competent Professional”. Stacey holds a Master’s degree in Social Foundations of Education. She is the mindfulness specialist for the ESEL initiative at Toby Farms.

Stephanie Ramones owns and is principal photographer and filmmaker at Contigo Photography. Stephanie received her Bachelors with distinction in Psychology and Philosophy from Boston University and her Masters in Positive Psychology from the University of Pennsylvania, giving her an in depth understanding of what makes individuals function and flourish.