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Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt

Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt

Monday, May 13, 2019 - 7:00 pm

$18 | $10 for Spertus members | $8 for students and Spertus alumni

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For questions or additional ticket information, call 312.322.1773

An award-winning documentary about one of the most influential thinkers of the 20th century

Critic's Pick—The New York Times

“Outstanding. Fluid and rich. This is heady stuff.”—Huffington Post

“A masterpiece of documentary filmmaking that delves deep.”—Ha'aretz

Philosopher and political theorist Hannah Arendt caused an uproar in the 1960s by coining a subversive concept she called the Banality of Evil in reference to the trial of Adolf Eichmann, which she covered for The New Yorker. Her private life was no less controversial thanks to her early love affair with the renowned German philosopher and Nazi supporter Martin Heidegger.

This thought-provoking and spirited documentary offers an intimate portrait of the whole of Arendt's life, traveling to places where she lived, worked, loved, and was betrayed, as she wrote about the open wounds of modern times.

Today there is renewed interest in Arendt throughout the world, as her insights into the nature of evil, totalitarianism, ideologies, and the perils faced by refugees are more relevant than ever. Vita Activa is shown in conjunction with the Spertus Institute exhibition The Three Escapes of Hannah Arendt, inspired by Ken Krimstein's graphic biography, which was named a finalist for the 2018 Jewish Book Award.

A post-show discussion will be led by Dr. Norma Claire Moruzzi, Associate Professor of Gender and Women's Studies, International Studies, and Political Science at University of Illinois at Chicago. She is the author of the Gradiva Award-winning Speaking through the Mask: Hannah Arendt and the Politics of Social Identity (Cornell University Press). 

Vita Activa: The Spirit of Hannah Arendt is written and directed by Ada Ushpiz
In English, German, and Hebrew with English subtitles | Runtime 125 minutes