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Documentary on 'Pledge of Allegiance' case to be screened

Taking the Pledge

Filmmaker Lisa Seidenberg will present her "Pledge of Allegiance Blues" (2004) as part of the Chicks Make Flicks film series on Tuesday, Nov. 9 at 7 p.m. in Room 124 at the Stata Center.

A discussion will follow the screening of the feature-length documentary that follows the story of Michael Newdow, a California physician who brought the landmark "under God" lawsuit to the United States Supreme Court in June 2004. Newdow, an avowed atheist, lost his bid to have the two words removed from the Pledge of Allegiance. The film also features the controversy over the Ten Commandments monument at the Alabama State Courthouse and investigates the intertwining of religion and government in American identity history. Personalities in the film include attorney Alan Dershowitz, publisher Larry Flynt and radio talk-show host Sandy Rios.

The event is co-sponsored by the Program in Women's Studies with Women in Film and Video/ New England, the Comparative Media Studies Program, MIT Women's Independent Living Group, and McCormick Hall.

Kuss Quartet performs in Kresge

The Kuss Quartet, whose performance was called "achingly beautiful" by Wilma Salisbury of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, will perform in Kresge Auditorium at 8 p.m. Friday, Nov. 5.

"They negotiated complex contrapuntal textures, eased into numerous tempo changes and produced ghostly colors, expressive sobs and long arching melodies," wrote Salisbury.

Quartet members Jana Kuss (violin), Oliver Wille (violin), William Coleman (viola) and Felix Nickel (cello) met while studying at the Hannse Eisler Academy of Music in Berlin in1991. Two years later, the ensemble made its official debut in a palace concert for Germany's former president Richard von Weizsacker. By 2002, the quartet had won first prize at the Borciani International String Quartet Competition and had been selected by the European Concert Halls Organization as the German participant in the 2003-2004 Rising Stars Program.

The performance will include Beethoven's "Grosse Fuge," Haydn's Quartet in C Major, and Bartok's Quartet No. 6.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on November 3, 2004 (download PDF).

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