Oliver Stone Screens South of the Border at Pomona

Well-known film director and screenwriter Oliver Stone came to Pomona College yesterday to screen his film South of the Border and to field questions from students, faculty, and members of the Claremont community.

The event was hosted in Edmunds Ballroom and sponsored by the Latin American Studies program, which offered 500 free tickets to the screening, all of which were claimed before the event.

The film tracks Stone’s trip around South America to explore the political situation in five countries and debunk the popular media’s misperceptions about the continent. Speaking with presidents Hugo Chvez of Venezuela, Evo Morales of Bolivia, Lula da Silva of Brazil, Cristina Kirchner?of Argentina, Fernando Lugo of Paraguay, Rafael Correa of Ecuador, and Ral Castro?of Cuba, Stone presents a unique view of the current social and political situation in South America.

“It was a good opportunity to exhibit the film and engage in a discussion about the political situation in Latin America,” said Latin American Studies Program Coordinator and Pomona history professor Miguel Tinker Salas, who arranged the event.

According to Tinker Salas, Stone’s travel documentary starts with a conversation on how mainstream media presents Latin America before continuing the discussion with the leaders of seven countries in South America.

“This film goes against the usual caricature of Latin America in the media and presents another image of Latin America,” Tinker Salas said. “The film helps spark a discussion that is not just about the usual binary of us against them.”

Tinker Salas asked Stone to screen his film at Pomona after participating in a Santa Monica event with Stone last year, where Stone debuted the film. Although Latin America Studies has funds for bringing speakers to campus, Stone screened his film free of charge.

“The program regularly does public events to engage in the discussion of Latin America, and this is part and parcel of that,” Tinker Salas said.

The Latin American Studies Program will host six more events this semester. At the next event, Carlota Caulfield, Chair of the Spanish and Spanish American Studies program at Mills College, will give a talk entitled, “Words in Flux: How a Poet Plays her Tunes.” It will take place March 1 at noon in Oldenborg Dining Hall.

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