The Stream

Past Producers Institutes: 2012 | 2011: Summer | 2011: NYC | 2010 | 2009 | 2008 | 2007 | The Stream

This exciting new series pioneers brave new models of storytelling around the world, and the impact of story-driven technology to inspire social movements. You will hear stories about how art and technology are transforming global communities -- from kids in India putting their slums on Google Maps and fighting polio with mobile phones, to stories from the pilogo.jpgGuatemalan genocide visualized as cultural data in a breathtaking online archive. These videos put a startling fresh face on the power of stories and new media tools to drive social change - from text messaging platforms, Second Life, mobile games, visualized cultural data, and augmented reality applications, to interactive maps that layer news, environmental data and community content, and immersive documentary formats that are changing moviemaking around the world.

THE STREAM a production of BAVC, inspired by projects that have been developed at the Producers Institute for New Media Technologies. The series consists of video stories, machinima, and radio podcasts available for distribution via BAVC's PRX channel. Executive Producer: Wendy Levy, Director and Editor: Debra Schaffner, Machinima and Audio Director and Editor: Bernhard Drax. Production of The Stream is made possible in part through generous funding from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation and the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. The Producers Institute for New Media Technologies is made possible in part through generous funding from the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting, the Nathan Cummings Foundation, the James Irvine Foundation, the William and Flora Hewlett Foundation, and the Keith Campbell Foundation for the Environment.

Jump to:  Always In Season | Bridge the Gulf | Budrus | Granito | Hela, Hello! | Power Poetry | Revolutionary Optimists | Finding Sacred Ground

Always In Season

Can a virtual world help us heal the legacy of racial violence in America?

For almost a century until the mid-1960s, tens of thousands of ordinary people attended the lynchings of more than 4,000 African Americans in the United States. As a native Southerner and African American woman who grew up in a community her family helped to integrate, director Jacqueline Olive brings a unique insight into the complexities of race that evolved out of the collective silence of her hometown in Mississippi.

Listen to Always In Season on PRX.

Bridge the Gulf

bridge.jpgWho are the real people restoring the Gulf Coast?

Bridge the Gulf is a storytelling initiative promoting cultural survival, environmental justice and sustainable development in Gulf Coast communities. Filmmaker Leah Mahan and local activists discuss her documentary Turkey Creek and the new interactive tools, maps, and digital community storytelling platform they are developing to connect organizations working on post-Katrina, post-BP, renewal efforts in the Gulf. 

Listen to Bridge the Gulf on PRX.


How can we use technology to bring peace to the Middle East?

Budrus is a documentary about a successful Palestinian-led nonviolent resistance movement. Ayed Morrar, a Palestinian community organizer, unites all Palestinian political factions and Israelis, waging an unarmed struggle to save his village from destruction by Israel's Separation Barrier. Victory seems improbable until his 15-year-old daughter launches a women's contingent that moves to the front lines. They save the village, and push the Barrier back behind the Green Line. In the process, Ayed and Iltezam unleash an inspiring, yet little known, movement in the Occupied Palestinian Territories that is still gaining ground. 

Listen to Change the Landscape on PRX.


granitop.jpgCan a film tip the scales of justice in Guatemala?

Pamela Yate's documentary Granito is a sequel to When the Mountains Tremble. The generals of the brutal military dictatorship in Guatemala that appear in When the Mountains Tremble are now being charged with genocide for their role in the deaths of 200,000 mostly Mayan peasants. Yates was asked to go back into all her outtakes from the previous film to be used as forensic evidence in the criminal case against the generals. An epic investigative story, the main characters sift for clues and documentation buried in film and print archives, unlocking the past to bring justice in present day Guatemala.

Listen to Granito: Every Memory Matters on PRX.

Hela, Hello!

helanew.jpgCan a game create community between Americans and Iraqis?

The US war in Iraq has displaced 5,000,000 Iraqis worldwide. Jehan Harney's film Dream of America reveals the unfolding Iraqi refugee crisis in the U.S. through the lives of two Iraqis who risked everything to support the US mission.

Listen to Hela, Hello! on PRX.

Power Poetry


heards.jpgWhat if kids used cell phones to write poetry?

Roland Leguirdi-Laura's film To Be Heard is the story of a group of high school students from the South Bronx who use poetry to transform their lives and the world around them. The core assumption of the documentary is that mastery of language - reading, writing and public speaking - is essential to living an empowered and engaged life.
Listen to Power Poetry on PRX.
Revolutionary Optimists

revolutionary.jpgWhat if children led the public health campaigns in India?

The Revolutionary Optimists
is a Stories of Change documentary about Amlan Ganguly, a lawyer-turned social entrepreneur who has made a significant impact in the poorest neighborhoods of Calcutta by empowering children to become change agents. Using street theater and dance as their weapons, the children have cut malaria rates in half, and turned garbage dumps into playing fields. Now, Amlan is attempting to take his work into the brickfields outside Calcutta, where child laborers work in unimaginable conditions. The film follows Amlan and two girls - Priyanka, a teenage dancer from the slums, and Kajol, a laborer in the brick field- as they go about the delicate and urgent work of bringing about change.

Listen to Map Your World on PRX.

Finding Sacred Ground

sacred.jpgCan augmented reality help protect endangered lands?

Losing Sacred Ground is a four-part documentary series that tells the stories of indigenous people resisting the destruction of their culture and natural habitats, giving voice to native people on five continents building a land rights movement to protect sacred sites, traditional ways of life and spiritual practices.

Listen to Finding Sacred Grounds on PRX.