Indiana Humanities, a statewide nonprofit that encourages Hoosiers to think, read and talk, is offering stipends to nonprofit organizations across the state to host screenings and discussions of the film Arab Indianapolis: A Hidden History.
Arab Indianapolis: A Hidden History, hosted by author and IUPUI Professor Edward E. Curtis IV, directed and produced by local filmmaker Becky Fisher and shot by Vinnie Manganello, reveals a new chapter in the diverse history of central Indiana. The film explores the first Arabic-speaking neighborhood in Indianapolis, the founding of St. George Church in the 1920s, the establishment of a prominent Arab American business on Monument Circle, the service of Arab Americans in World War II, the election of Arab Americans to political offices in the Indiana Capitol, the contributions of Arab Americans to medicine since the 1920s, and the influence of Arab American food on menus across the city.
“In 2005, when I arrived in Indianapolis to take a new job, I had no idea that people like me had been living in the city since the 1800s. That hidden history inspired me to work with other Arab Americans to make a film that reveals our community’s origins and development,” said Curtis, executive producer of the film. “I hope that it makes everyone in attendance, no matter where they trace their roots, feel more at home in Indiana.”
Host organizations will receive a $250 stipend and a robust discussion toolkit to support their planning process. Programs should be free and open to the public. Organizations should first review the discussion toolkit before completing the application form. To learn more about the film and other resources, visit the Arab Indianapolis webpage.