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  • Writer's pictureChristina Hunt Wood

For warmth, truth, and joy: Why I Chose Summer of Soul as my Community Film Pick

Updated: Jan 16, 2023

On January 20, Bushel Collective in Delhi is presenting a screening of Summer of Soul as part of their Community Film Picks series. It just so happens that I, Christina Hunt Wood, was the community member with the honor of selecting this incredible documentary that features footage from the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival—footage that was locked away in a basement for 50 years. Here’s why Summer of Soul was my #1 pick:

  1. The Catskill Mountains in the winter can be a little oppressive and I am a summer baby through and through. Summer of Soul's style, mood, and cadence scream "SUMMERTIME!" The film transports our imaginations to that hot summer of fun and offers a break from the toil of the chillier (often downright frigid) season.

  2. As the lead artist of the Living Archive Project, I’m driven to make space for untold stories from people who have been historically underrepresented—the people who have not been trusted to represent the rural northern Catskills. Amir “Quest Love” Thompson, the film’s Director had a similar mission. While this film isn’t a local one, it is a story that has been erased from American history in favor of the much whiter story of Woodstock, which took place the same year. In choosing Summer of Soul for Bushel’s series, I hope that maybe one, two, or ten more people better understand the nature of American history (what stories are told and who chooses them) and discover the importance of the Harlem Cultural Festival.

  3. BLACK JOY! Sometimes Black people just need to escape from the realities of a country organized around white supremacy...a country that works hard (even when it thinks it's not) to hold on to those roots. Summer of Soul provides a break where one can just be enveloped in beautiful, powerful, unpoliced, and joyful Blackness.

Following the screening, Darwin Marcus Johnson will be DJing a set just in case we need to dance a bit afterward. There is no fee to attend, registration is recommended (not required).

Community Film Picks: Summer of Soul

Fri, Jan 20, 7:00 pm - 10:30 pm

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