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FREE Documentary and Panel Discussion
Mar. 12, 2019
7:30 pm
Musco Center for the Arts
other Information: Box Office is open Tuesday-Friday 12-6pm and 60 minutes before showtime.

Tickets are free. Reservations required.

Chapman University’s Office of the President, Office of Research, and Musco Center for the Arts Present


Exploring America’s Great Divide

FREE Documentary and Panel Discussion

“An ambitious and enlightening documentary, filled with wisdom and asking great questions … ★★★ 1/2 “


HILLBILLY is an award-winning new documentary film that seeks to expand understanding of rural America, tracing the evolution of the “hillbilly” stereotype in media and culture and connecting it to our country’s current divisive cultural climate.

In HILLBILLY, winner of the Jury Prize for Best Documentary at the Los Angeles Film Festival and long-listed for an Oscar, directors Sally Rubin and Ashley York examine the experience of rural voters and seek to expand understanding of Appalachia by featuring diverse communities across the region.

Praised by Michael Moore and Dolly PartonHILLBILLY seeks to challenge viewers’ perception of Appalachia, opening up a dialogue between urban and rural America, and offering folks within the region a cinematic portrayal of which they can be proud.

About the Panel

Dr. Stephanie Takaragawa is Associate Dean of the Wilkinson College of Arts, Humanities, and Social Sciences at Chapman University. Her expertise is in Cultural Anthropology and Visual Culture, as well as representation in film, mass media, art, performance, and cultural display. She is a founding member of the curatorial collective Ethnographic Terminalia. She is currently president of the Society for Visual Anthropology (2015-2017), a subsection of the American Anthropological Association.


Described by the New York Times as “America’s uber-geographer,” Joel Kotkin is an internationally-recognized authority on global, economic, political and social trends. He authored THE HUMAN CITY: Urbanism for the Rest of Us and co-edited the recently released collection Infinite Suburbia. Mr. Kotkin is the Presidential Fellow in Urban Futures at Chapman University in Orange, California and Executive Director of the Houston-based Center for Opportunity Urbanism. He is Senior Advisor to the Kem C. Gardner Policy Institute. He is Executive Editor of the widely read website www.newgeography.com and writes the weekly “New Geographer” column for Forbes.com. A regular contributor to the Daily Beast and Real Clear Politics, he also writes a weekly column for Digital First Media, which owns numerous daily newspapers in the greater Los Angeles region. Kotkin recently completed several studies including on Texas urbanism, the future of localism, and the changing role of transit in America. As director of the Center for Demographics and Policy at Chapman, he recently published a strategic analysis for Orange County, CA.

Dr. Han is a Professor of Political Science at Chapman University. Her major area of expertise is American government, with research and teaching interests in the presidency, women and politics, media and politics, and political leadership. She is the author of Presidents and the American Presidency, Women, Power, and PoliticsHandbook to American Democracy, A Presidency Upstaged: The Public Leadership of George H.W. Bush, The Spectrum of Leadership, and Governing From Center Stage: White House Communication Strategies During the Television Age of Politics. She is also the editor of Hatred of America’s Presidents: Personal Attacks on the White House from Washington to Trump. Her research has also appeared in American Politics Research, Presidential Studies Quarterly, Congress and the Presidency, and White House Studies. In addition, Dr. Han is the past president of the Presidency Research Group, an organized section of the American Political Science Association devoted to the study of the presidency.

Sally Rubin, Co-Director/Producer of hillbilly, is an Emmy-nominated documentary filmmaker who has worked in the field for over 20 years. Her films have broadcast on the Emmy-award PBS series Independent Lens and PBS nationally, and she has produced and edited films that have aired on Frontline, HBO, and the Sundance Channel. Rubin has received grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities, the National Endowment for the Arts, Chicken and Egg Pictures, the MacArthur Foundation, and the Fledgling Fund, among others. Her films have screened at top film festivals and series including the LA Film Festival, DOC NYC, Big Sky, and the American Documentary Showcase. Rubin holds an M.A in Documentary Film from Stanford University and is a judge for the Emmy Awards, the International Documentary Awards, and an Assistant Professor of Documentary Film at Chapman University.

Production Stills