Spike Lee to speak at FIU in honor of Black History Month

Natasha Roque//Contributing Writer

Celebrated director, producer, writer and actor Spike Lee will be speaking at the Modesto Maidique Campus’ Graham Center on Tuesday, Feb. 26 in honor of Black History Month.

The lecture will inform and involve students, covering subjects and areas about the black community and the hardships of urban life.

Hosted by the Student Programming Council, MMC SPC Event Director Prevart Janvier said the lecture seeks to “spread knowledge and inspiration.”

Lee is known for his work on major films including “Malcolm X” and “Inside Man,” and various renowned documentaries covering key social and political injustices.

His lecture will touch upon the various political, social, historical and economic troubles still penetrating urban communities today and how he sought to capture these struggles through a camera lens.

“[Lee] tries to portray a sense of the real world that many people do not see on a daily basis,” junior and engineering major Jacob Cano said. “As an engineering student, some of the footage he’s presented in his films has provided the roots to some of the thinking behind my major.”

Lee’s films most often feature black protagonists depicted in typical urban settings. In this way, Lee highlights the array of conflicts African Americans face as a result of their race, and ultimately sheds light on the urban plight.

“It is essential that structures in either urban or rural communities be created for the betterment of the people in the community. I personally believe your surroundings create a reflection of the attitude of the community because if not, Spike Lee would not put so much emphasis on the settings of his films,” Cano said.

Attendees will gain insight on the thought process that lies behind Lee’s work as they relate to black urban life.

Students and attendees will also have the opportunity to engage with Lee during an open Q&A session after he speaks.

“Spike Lee is well-versed in political issues, urban crime, poverty, film and various other topics,” Janvier said. “Students of all majors will benefit from this lecture.”

The event is from 6 p.m. — 8 p.m. and is open to FIU students and staff free of charge. Tickets are available at the Campus Life office.

“Students who do not know of his works and his humanitarianism are going to be in for a pleasant surprise,” said Cano.