Artists' Television Access

Directing Dissent: A Film by Sophie Hamacher

Saturday, July 6, 2013, 8:00 pm, $6-$10,

peace-march-stillDirecting Dissent is a documentary about John Roemer, teacher and social activist, and his decisions to either live within the law, or have a sound basis for civil disobedience.

Set in Baltimore, a city with a turbulent history of charged race relations, Roemer’s story takes us through the heated battles of the civil rights movement and involves dramatic experiences in the fight to desegregate Maryland. As an activist and teacher, John Roemer not only shaped public discourse on matters of equal rights before the eyes of the law, but also took it upon himself to foster principles of equality and freedom in the many students he taught at two of Baltimore city’s prominent educational institutions – the Friends School and the Park School. Through Roemer’s experiences, we look at the junctions between civil rights and civil liberties, integration, and the peace and justice movements of the 20th and 21st century. This film shows the continued relevance of causes such as civil rights and social justice in today’s world and how one can apply an activist philosophy to everyday life.

Directing Dissent intends to engage Marylanders in an intergenerational dialogue about the legacy and impact of the Civil Rights movement and the Anti-Vietnam War movement, and the state of civil liberties and political activism in today’s climate. For more information about Directing Dissent and to view the trailer,



Sophie Hamacher (Director and Producer), an artist and filmmaker from Berlin and Baltimore, works primarily with collage, reconfiguring media images by using documents and reclaiming them from their mere informative quality. She has written extensively on the relationship between art and document, and the unconscious or conscious witnessing of historical events through photography and film. She has directed, and written a collaborative film in Tehran, has co-curated the exhibition Überleben (2007), has taught and organized various seminars and is currently working on a documentary film about the decisions of a teacher and activist – to either live within the law, or have a sound basis for civil disobedience. Her films have been shown in international video festivals and symposiums in Cairo, London, Berlin and New York.



“Shooting the Good Guy in Black”

written by Cassie Paton for


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