Film Event and Conversation

May 15th, 2021, 6:30 PM 

Online discussion with filmmakers of Signing Black in America, and Black American Sign Language (BASL) performers. With the North Carolina Museum of Art Film Club. Register for the Film Event and Conversation.

Meet the Filmmakers

Danica Cullinan

Danica Cullinan produces documentaries and educational media for the Language & Life Project (LLP) at NC State. She produced Spanish Voices (with Walt Wolfram, 2011), Cedars in the Pines (with Akram Khater, 2012), First Language- the race to save Cherokee (with Neal Hutcheson, 2014), Talking Black in America (with Neal Hutcheson, 2017), and Signing Black in America (with Neal Hutcheson, 2020). She also produces short videos highlighting research at NC State and related topics. Cullinan previously worked as an archivist and video editor for the Special Collections Research Center at NCSU Libraries.

Image Description: Danica, a white woman with brown hair and brown eyes, smiles. She is wearing a fuchsia top and gold earrings.

Dr. Joseph C. Hill

Dr. Joseph C. Hill is an Associate Professor in the Department of ASL and Interpreting Education, Associate Director of the Center on Culture and Language, and Assistant Dean for Faculty Recruitment and Retention at Rochester Institute of Technology’s National Technical Institutes for the Deaf. His research interests include socio-historical and -linguistic aspects of African-American variety of American Sign Language and attitudes and ideologies about signing varieties in the American Deaf community. His contributions include The Hidden Treasure of Black ASL: Its History and Structure (2011) which he co-authored with Carolyn McCaskill, Ceil Lucas, and Robert Bayley and Language Attitudes in the American Deaf Community (2012).

Image Description: Dr. Hill, a black man with glasses and a trimmed beard wearing a blue shirt, golden yellow tie and gray pullover.

Dr. Carolyn McCaskill

Dr. Carolyn McCaskill was born in Mobile, Alabama, and currently lives in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.  She is the sister of Dr. Angela McCaskill. Dr. Carolyn McCaskill has been teaching at Gallaudet University since 1996 and holds the position of Founding Director of the Center for Black Deaf Studies & Professor Deaf Studies Department. Her contributions include The Hidden Treasure of Black ASL: Its History and Structure (2011) which she co-authored with Ceil Lucas, Robert Bayley and Joseph Hill.

Image Description: Dr. McCaskill, a Black woman with straight black hair and red lipstick. She is wearing a bright red/orange top with pearls.

Meet the Performers

Daisy Rivenbark

Daisy Rivenbark was born in Pitt County NC, but her family moved to Washington DC for better opportunities. She grew up in Washington DC.

She received her education from Gallaudet University, majored in Communication Arts graduating with a BA.  She earned her M.A. in Rehabilitation in Deafness from New York University. She has four children, grandmother of two and one is on the way. 

Image Description: Daisy is a Black woman with short white, afro-style hair, glasses, pink lipstick and hooped earrings.

Tempest Stokes

Tempest Stokes is an Afro-Jamaican Deaf Artist, currently living and working in Pennsylvania. She holds a Master’s Degree in Social Work from Gallaudet University.  Tempest was a former Miss Deaf USA 2018-2019 and won 3rd place for the cultural attire for Miss and Mister Deaf International (MMDI). She is also the First Black Deaf woman to be part of the 2nd oldest grad chapter (Beta Zeta) Zeta Phi Beta Sorority in Washington DC.

As a motivational speaker, she presents her story, personal experiences and what it’s like to be a Black Deaf woman while overcoming barriers. Tempest has  presented at University of Memphis,University of Minnesota, SLIAO in Canada, State of Nevada Department of Health and Human Services, and also made a brief appearance in “Signing Black in America”.

Image Description: Tempest is a young Black woman with short hair, red lipstick and gold hoop earrings.