Friday, April 15, 2011

Couch-Surfing in Cairo ( An Arabic-speaking American filmaker goes abroad)

I found the following excerpts in a woman's magazine as I walked to the bank today.

The article gave me a glimpse into what amazing creativity in bridge-building can come from a person who grew up the daughter of a US Green Beret and was herself in the US military. Yet kept expanding her awareness of language and the world. A touching story. Many readers here may want to follow Jennifer MacDonald's adventures and desire to really hear (and let us listen to) how others see America. Interesting to see the progression over the years of this beautiful, capable and talented woman "who thinks the Middle East is NOT about camels and magic carpet rides."

"Misconceptions about Arabs abound, she says, particularly among Americans, who don't seek out varied media and are generally poor at geography." (blogger, Connie, adds - language too!)"Ask an American to point to Yemen on a map," MacDonald continues, "and nine out of ten can't do it."

Because she's traveled there (Yemen) and tunes into outlets like the Qatar RV network Al Jazeera, she's taken a broader view for years. "I don't see it as holy cr'p, the world is being taken over by Islamic extremists," she says, "I see it as a time of growth and change..."

...MacDonald ws co-writer and producer, with her former husband Chusy Haney-Jardine, of the movie "Anywhere, USA"...a quirky tale that, in part, addresses how Arabs were treated in America after 9/11 - released in 2008 and won jury prize at the Sundance Film Festival...

Since last January, MacDonald has been teaching Arabic to high school students around here goal is nothing short of a global teaching project- showing Americans, through a website and eventual film, that the Middle East is not quite what they thought...

See the rest of the article Found in VERVEMAG.COM at this URL here This project refers the reader to this website where readers can follow the filmaker's travels, conversations and discoveries before the film is finished - GO here

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