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University of Alabama hosting film festival to highlight Native American culture and history

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The University of Alabama will host its first ever Native American Film Festival today and tomorrow. Moundville Archaeological Park is partnering with the university to celebrate Native American Heritage Month on campus.

The festival will take place at the Student Center Theater from 5-11 p.m. It will feature films from indigenous tribes including the Chickasaw, Choctaw, Muskogee and the Eastern Band of Cherokee Indians.

Cultural Resource Investigator Clay Nelson said he hopes the festival will inspire indigenous students and residents to remember that their voice matters.

“I think it’s really important that people be able to see people who look like them or have similar backgrounds to them," he said, "so that they know that they are still part of all that’s going on, that their stories, their images and their ideals are represented in the general public just as much as anyone else’s are.”

Nelson said he hopes festival goers recognize that indigenous history and heritage should not only be celebrated this month.

“I think we should try and remember Native American heritage as part of American history and as part of world history all the time," he said. "We shouldn’t just pigeonhole it to one month. I think having this one month where we can kind of start focusing on that for a minute is a good stepping off point.”

The festival is free of charge and no pre-registration is required. Masking is advised.

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