On Tuesday 26 July, the Toronto Reading Group will continue with the third session of their ongoing Reading Group, which is currently focused If I Can’t Dance’s research field of Edition VI – Event and Duration (2015–2016). The Toronto Reading Group is organized by Jacob Korczynski and for this Edition is generously hosted by 8-11.
For the third meeting, the Toronto Reading Group will draw upon a free screening of Lizzie Borden's film Born in Flames (1983) as one of our texts. Presented as part of the summer season of The Free Screen at TIFF Bell Lightbox, the screening is of a brand new restored 35mm print, will be introduced by Lizzie Borden, and begins at 8.45pm with tickets made available two hours before the screening. A feminist science fiction film, Born in Flames presents a speculative future where, ten years after a peaceful socialist revolution in the United States of America, groups of women are organizing to combat the racism and sexism that persists. Further details about the film and screening can be found here.
In the context of the current research around event and duration, Born in Flames asks what is the life that comes after an event, even after the goal of socialist revolution is supposedly achieved? Who gets access to the achievements of an event and how long does that last? The speculation inherent to the genre of science fiction that Borden is working with also makes a single event or duration elastic:
“I'm not presenting a picture of what could or should happen, but posing the question of what it would be like if a group of women started demanding equal representation; what if women decided they had to pick up arms to make their demands known; what if women started to work together across race and class lines; what if.”
For this session, along with watching Born in Flames, the group will read the interview ‘Sci-Fi Visions: An Interview with Octavia Butler’, conducted by Roasalie G. Harrison and published in Equal Opportunity Forum Magazine (1980), which will frame the discussion about the speculative thinking of the genre and its ability to address both race and gender.
The Toronto Reading Group will meet in the cinema at the Lightbox where the screening will be held at 8pm to begin discussing the interview with Octavia Butler and then will adjourn to the park adjacent to Metro Hall close by to continue our discussion following the screening of Born in Flames.