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Erica Cardwell presents PARIAH


2011. US. 86 min. Directed by Dee Rees.

Groundbreaking for its compelling and unique portrait of a black lesbian coming of age in Brooklyn, PARIAH was the directorial feature debut of Dee Rees (who was recently nominated for an Academy Award for MUDBOUND). The film is not only remarkable for how it addresses topics of identity, freedom, acceptance, and sexuality, but for its depiction of complex relationships within an African American family structure. For tonight’s presenter, writer and Black Lives Matter activist Erica Cardwell, the film “helped to end my dance with shame and really freed something inside of me." Join us for this powerful film with breakout performances by Adepero Oduye and Kim Wayans!


Erica Cardwell is a writer, activist, and radical educator based in New York. She received her MFA in Creative Nonfiction from Sarah Lawrence College and has been awarded fellowships and residencies by the Lambda Literary Foundation and Vermont Studio Center. Erica has taught composition, creative writing, and literature at schools and universities across the country, such as: Barnard College, UC Berkeley, Marymount Manhattan College, and currently at the Borough of Manhattan Community College. Her recent essays and reviews have appeared in The Believer, Hyperallergic, Bitch Media, Rewire, Triangle House Review, and Green Mountains Review. Erica is a board member of Radical Teacher Journal. She is currently working on a critical memoir about grief and imagination for Black women.