When Jan Blommaert announced his diagnosis of terminal cancer, his friends and colleagues decided to do something. This something takes the form of an online masterclass about language and inequality seen through the lens of the life and work of Jan Blommaert.
The documentary goes under the working title Language x Power x Activism and will be freely available online, in Dutch and in English (subtitles in English) for everyone. The online première is scheduled for 2021. For this to happen, we need your help.
This project is an initiative of Ico Maly (University of Tilburg / Diggit), a former student and close colleague of Jan Blommaert, movie maker Pieter De Vos (Docwerkers), Epo Publishing and Victoria Deluxe.
In August 2020, Jan and Ico spent two full days in a studio to talk for hours, surrounded by a battery of cameras.
These cameras show Jan in all his splendor as he discusses far right discourse in Flanders, Black Lives Matter and the decolonization of academia. Jan and Ico talked about language as a societal architecture and the responsibilities of public intellectuals. They discussed the development of an academic industrial culture and the terror of academic publishing.
In these talks, Jan stresses the importance of giving, shaping and inspiring people, and the importance of using scientific insights in social struggles.
We would like to ask you for your financial support to make these recordings available in the form of an online documentary because interesting conversations alone do not make a film. Seven hours of interview recordings are currently being crafted into an engaging story.
We are collecting historical archived footage and need to buy the rights to show them. The documentary requires music, editing of colors and sounds, translation and promotion. This requires financial support. Your help would be very much appreciated.