Security

April 1st, 2014  |  By Serenity Bolt

WOW! Look what’s happening at Round Earth!

Round Earth’s Documentary

Willing to Break

A Minneapolis St Paul International Film Festival Official Selection 

Monday, April 14, 7:00 pm 

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Willing to Break

 

Willing to Break explores the life of the only veiled break-dancer in Morocco and her perseverance in a counterculture dominated by men.
This film was produced and directed by a trio of impressive young journalists — Americans Sutton Raphael and JP Keenan in partnership with their Moroccan colleague Loubna Fouzar.   All were mentored by Round Earth’s veteran film-makers and journalists.
Raphael and Keenan will be in the Twin Cities for the premier of this powerful film.  Please come support them and see a short film you’ll never forget!

 Details HERE

 

Photo Sutton RaphelSutton Raphael is majoring in journalism at the University of Oregon and minoring in Arabic. He is an aspiring documentary filmmaker and plans to live in the Middle East after graduating.

Photo JP Keenan

JP Kennan is a documentary filmmaker and photographer studying at Ithaca College.  He is passionate about using the documentary medium to bring awareness to social issues.

Loubna Fouzar is a Moroccan journalism student who studies at Institut Supérieur de l’Information et de la Communication (ISIC) in Rabat.  

Wednesday, April 9th at 7:10 p.m. also at the MSP Intl Film Fest:  Who is Dayani Cristal?

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Who is Dayani Cristal?

 

Round Earth is interested in your comments about this documentary film focused on migration from Central America to the United States.  The film starts beneath a cicada tree as Arizona border police discover a decomposing male body. Lifting a tattered T-shirt, they expose a tattoo that reads “Dayani Cristal.” Who is this person? What brought him here? How did he die? And who—or what—is Dayani Cristal?   As the forensic investigation unfolds, Mexican actor and Gael Garcia Bernal retraces this man’s steps along the migrant trail in Central America.

Details HERE

Please stay after the film for a discussion and lend us your insight into the subject of one of our next reporting projects: migration from Mexico and Central America.

First Place National Headliner Award for Mexico Uncovered Story

pedro_reyes_electric_guitar_made_from_guns

Photo: Electric Guitar by Pedro Reyes (Courtesy of Lisson Gallery, London; Photograph © Ken Adlard)

We are very pleased to announce that Marlon Bishop’s amazing story, An Orchestra of Guns, produced as part of our project, Mexico Uncovered, received a first place National Headliner Award this week.  This award recognizes outstanding print and broadcast work and is one of the oldest and largest annual contests recognizing journalistic excellence. Congratulations, Marlon!

Marlon’s story focused on Mexico City artist Pedro Reyes, who converted thousands of  weapons seized by the government into musical instruments. The project, titled Imagine, has so far produced 50 working instruments ranging from pistol-flutes to shotgun-zithers, with more being churned out all the time.

Reyes and a team of machinists and musicians have been working long hours in his Mexico City workshop to build the instruments.  In Spring 2013,  he put on a major concert with music commissioned for the instruments in the UK. Proceeds from the event went to support gun control legislation in the US – the source of almost all of Mexico’s illegal weapons. We visit Reyes and his workshop and look at the symbolism of what he’s creating.  More on Marlon’s story and our project, Mexico Uncovered, here: www.MexicoUncovered.org

 

May 31st, 2013  |  By Mary Stucky

More Real? Art in the Age of Truthiness

It’s been more than a decade since the U.S. invasion of Iraq and, with the country still engulfed in violence, it can be hard to remember how it all began.  U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell spoke before the UN Security Council in 2003, describing what he said was Saddam Hussein’s secret weapons program.

Phantom Truck | Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle

Phantom Truck | Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle

“We have firsthand descriptions of biological weapons factories on wheels and on rails,” said Powell. “The trucks and train cars are easily moved and are designed to evade detection by inspectors.”

The trucks and train cars were never found.  But Madrid-born artist, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle was inspired to create his own life size replica of a biological weapons factory on wheels.  It’s one of the artworks in a powerful exhibit at the Minneapolis Institute of Arts (MIA).

I arrived in Minneapolis from North Africa in time to see the exhibit, “More Real? Art in the Age of Truthiness.”   Truthiness is the word invented by Steven Colbert to mean something that is believed regardless of the facts.  This may be the fundamental issue of our times. (more…)

March 19th, 2013  |  By Mary Stucky

An Orchestra of Guns

Electric Guitar by Pedro Reyes Courtesy of Lisson Gallery, London; Photograph © Ken Adlard

The United States and Mexico share deep personal, economic, geographic and cultural connections, but understanding — on both sides of the border — is often limited by stereotype and media exaggeration.  Round Earth Media is out to change that.

We launched in 2005, with a bounty of stories from Mexico, supported by a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. Now, in a groundbreaking new collaboration and with generous support from the John D and Catherine T MacArthur Foundation, Round Earth Media is pairing young American and Mexican journalists, to produce powerful, untold stories from Mexico.  These stories are broadcast and published in top-tier media, reaching huge audiences in both countries. 

Here’s our latest, broadcast on NPR. Mexico City artist Pedro Reyes is in the process of converting thousands of narco gang weapons seized by the government into musical instruments. Click HERE to listen.

February 19th, 2013  |  By Mary Stucky

Transforming Guns into Musical Instruments

Mexico City artist Pedro Reyes is in the process of converting thousands of narco gang weapons seized by the government into musical instruments.  Mexican reporter Omar Sanchez de Tagle, paired with American reporter Marlon Bishop, produced this story as part of Round Earth’s Mexico Reporting Project.  Omar’s story appears in Animal Politico, a major Mexican investigative news website.

To read this powerful story in Spanish, view photos and a video, click HERE.

Our untold stories, published and broadcast in top-tier media, reach huge audiences in the U.S. and in the countries where we are reporting.


November 28th, 2012  |  By Mary Stucky

Mexico’s Drug War Is Changing Childhood

Mexico’s violent drug war has gotten a lot of sensational attention in U.S. media but there’s been very little attention paid to the effect of this unrelenting violence on Mexico’s children.  Round Earth Media’s Mexico Reporting Project is dedicated to reporting important, untold stories from Mexico, like this one from Annie Murphy which was broadcast on NPR’s  All Things Considered. CLICK HERE to listen to Annie’s powerful story about the ways in which violence is dramatically changing what it’s like to be a kid in Mexico. At Round Earth Media we pair early-career American reporters with early-career reporters in the countries where where we’re working to publish and broadcast in top-tier media in both countries.  Here’s Annie Murphy on the partnership and Round Earth’s ground-breaking model.

Mexican reporter Isabella Cota & and American reporter Annie Murphy interviewing together in Mexico.

Like most freelancers, I’m used to flying solo, which often means making many decisions on my own, at all stages of reporting. While there are things I really enjoy about that system, working with Round Earth was refreshing precisely because of the collaborative model the organization uses. I was paired to work in the field with reporter Isabella Cota, a top-notch Mexican journalist, as well as on the production side with veteran reporters and editors Mary Stucky and Leda Hartman. In working with Isabella I found both a colleague and a friend, a fellow reporter I will doubtless turn to for advice and feedback in the future, and someone whose career I’ll support in any way I’m able; that same spirit of camaraderie applies to the editorial side of the project as well. I think that the sum of all our experiences and resources as reporters and editors allowed us to tackle this pair of stories in Mexico in a way that was efficient, in-depth, and fun–and much more comprehensive than what I’d have been able to do on my own in the same amount of time. (more…)

November 8th, 2012  |  By Mary Stucky

THURSDAY November 15 Your Donation will be MATCHED – Thursday only!

CLICK HERE

It’s easy fast and secure!  MAXIMIZE YOUR SUPPORT for these amazing young journalists and the veteran journalists who mentor them.

Round Earth’s Mexico Reporting Project: Isabella Cota and Annie Murphy reporting in Mexico

The U.S. and Mexico share deep personal, economic, geographic and cultural connections, but our understanding of Mexico is often limited by stereotype and media exaggeration. This fall, Round Earth Media is pairing young American and Mexican journalists, in a groundbreaking collaboration, to produce untold stories from Mexico, stories rich in place and humanity. These stories will reach huge audiences in the United States and in Mexico.

An indigenous village in Mexico got fed up with gangs and illegal loggers acting with impunity. So they kicked them out, kicked    out their local authorities and set up their own government. And some other villages are looking at it too.  “Josephina,” pictured above, was one of the first to get organized.  For security she doesn’t want to be identified. Photo: Isabella Cota

Click HERE to listen to this story which ran nationwide on The World.

October 6th, 2012  |  By Round Earth Media

Salvadoran Killed While Waiting On US Immigration Papers

The Garcia Family | Photo courtesy of Alyssa Garcia

Some years ago, Charlie Garcia came to the United States illegally and married an American citizen. Then the Salvadoran decided to try to legalize his immigration status. He went back to El Salvador to file his paperwork, as required. Tragically, he was killed there, waiting for his paperwork to come through.

This story was broadcast in English on National Public Radio in the United States and in Spanish in El Salvador in ContraPunto. Eric Lemus contributed to the story published in El Salvador.

(more…)

August 5th, 2012  |  By Mary Stucky

Imagine: Worrying that your child could be kidnapped into a gang

A child in El Salvador believed to have been kidnapped into a gang. | Photo: Ambar Espinoza

El Salvador has the world’s second highest murder rate – more than 4,300 murders last year alone. That’s just behind Honduras, its neighbor in Central America. The United States bears some responsibility for this.  Many of these young men (or their parents) fled to the U.S. to escape the war in El Salvador in the 1980s, a war that was financed, in part, by the United States. Some of those young immigrants grew up to be gang members and were deported from the U.S. by the courts, ending up back in El Salvador where they continued their gang activities.

The U.S. has poured hundreds of millions into anti-gang efforts in Central America but nothing much seemed to change until just a few months ago, when the Catholic Church stepped in to broker a truce between two gangs in El Salvador.  But the culture of violence there remains.

We sent Ambar Espinoza to El Salvador to report one mother’s story and what the U.S. and El Salvador are doing to try bring justice and safety to the country.  Ambar herself was born in El Salvador and fled the country when she was just a child, grew up in Los Angeles and went on to become an award-winning public radio reporter.   Here’s her story.

July 24th, 2012  |  By Round Earth Media

El Salvador Claims Violence Decline, Mother Still Looks for Kidnapped Son

This photograph is one of many Betty Espinoza keeps of her missing son Franklin, who was 13 years old at the time he went missing. | Photo by Ambar Espinoza

This story was broadcast in English on National Public Radio in the United States and published in Spanish in El Salvador on the front page of  ContraPunto.  Eric Lemus contributed to the story published in El Salvador.

Listen to this story

The following is a transcript. To listen to this broadcast, please click on the link above.

| By Ambar Espinoza

El Salvador has the world’s second highest murder rate – more than 4,300 murders last year alone. That’s just behind Honduras, its neighbor in Central America. The United States has poured hundreds of millions into anti-gang efforts in Central America but nothing much seemed to change until just a few months ago, when the Catholic Church stepped in to broker a truce between the two gangs in El Salvador. But the culture of violence there remains.  Ambar Espinoza has this report. (more…)

June 9th, 2012  |  By Mary Stucky

What does it mean to be an American?

Sara Mansfield Taber is out to answer this question in her powerful, provocative and insightful new memoir, Born Under an Assumed Name.   The daughter of a CIA agent, Taber composes her family’s haunting story, stroke by exquisitely beautiful stroke. This vibrant family portrait of love and heart-ache reveals much about America—our passion, confusion, contradictions, and especially, the tragedy we bring upon the world despite our very best intentions.

For those of you in the Twin Cities, Sara Mansfield Taber will be reading from her book this coming Sunday, June 17th at 4:00 p.m. at Common Good Books (corner of Snelling and Grand in St. Paul).    Check out her national reading schedule here.

Listen to an interview with Sara Mansfield Taber on NPR

Taber’s blog on non-fiction and memoir writing

From the preface:

I was born under an assumed name.

It was in Kamakura that my parents first went under. “Mr. Brown,” a colleague, met them at the Tokyo airport after the endless flights from Washington. As he was driving them the forty miles to Kamakura near the coast he asked them to select a surname. Once they arrived at their new home, nestled into a mountain slope beneath an ancient, three-story high Buddha, they settled into their new identity…

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