is a Detroit-based journalist and documentary filmmaker. She is currently researching a major veterans oral history project for the Arab American National Museum and filming a documentary on Detroit area beekeepers.
Her New Day documentaries are: Tales from Arab Detroit; Voices in Exile: Immigrants and the First Amendment; and Gaza Ghetto: Portrait of a Palestinian Family.
Joan Mandell has taught documentary film production/film studies and ESL at University of California/ Irvine, College for Creative Studies/Detroit, Birzeit University/Palestine and most recently aboard a ship travelling around the world with the University of Virginia/Semester-at-Sea. She was a Fulbright scholar, a Felton Scholar in Media Literacy and an affiliated fellow at UCLA's von Grunebaum Center for Near East Studies. Joan co-founded Al Fajr news-weekly and served on the editorial board of Middle East Report for two decades.
Tales from Arab Detroit
A film by Joan MandellWhat does it mean to be Arab American? TALES FROM ARAB DETROIT is an intimate community portrait. A visiting Egyptian storyteller/bard provokes an inquiry into issues of Arab heritage and tradition in a quintessential American immigrant community. American born children-- a "7-11 girl", hiphop dancer and rapper among them-- reconcile social and cultural differences with Arab immigrant parents. Through music, poetry and the ironies of everyday life, young people face up to racial discrimination and other socio-political challenges that are simultaneously similar and different than those of youth in other ethnic communities.
Voices in Exile: Immigrants and the First Amendment
A film by Joan MandellArab Americans bring civil liberties to the Supreme Court.... Since the passage of the USA Patriot Act, immigrants' rights to civil liberties have been profoundly diminished under the rubric of "national security". VOICES IN EXILE gives historical context to these contemporary issues, by drawing connections between recent campaigns against Muslims and Arab Americans, the anti-communism of the McCarthy era and the post-WWI Palmer raids. VOICES IN EXILE succinctly documents the beginnings of the longest running deportation case in US history: the 20 year trial of the "LA 8". This riveting video examines plans for rounding up Arab Americans, reminiscent of the WWII internment of Japanese Americans, and foreshadowing Guantanamo. The ACLU and Center for Constitutional Rights take on the FBI, INS and Justice Department (now Homeland Security) in a courtroom battle over First Amendment rights for all non-citizen residents.