Pitt Jazz hosts film, music, discussion event on ‘The Honest Struggle’

The Pitt Jazz program, in collaboration with City of Asylum, will present a two-day film, music and discussion event, “The Honest Struggle: Living as a Target,” focusing on the life of Sadiq Davis, a Muslim convert who re-entered society in the South Side of Chicago after 25 years of incarceration.

The event kicks off at 7 p.m. Feb. 4 with a screening of the documentary “The Honest Struggle” by Justin Mashouf, a film about Davis’ struggles, followed at 7 p.m. Feb. 5 with a panel discussion organized by Nicole Mitchell Gantt, Pitt’s director of Jazz Studies, and a performance of original music by Davis, a vocalist/pianist, and vocalist Aquilla Sadalla.

The discussion will focus on the stereotypes that follow people after incarceration and the difficulties in trying to make a decent and honest life for themselves, along with the role of institutional racism in the prison industrial complex. The project is also a testament to music as a saving grace for those facing extreme challenges.  

Davis and Mashouf will be joined on the panel by Richard Garland, director of Pitt’s Reimagine Re-entry program, and James Badue El, founder of the People’s Right to Obtain Our Freedom (PROOF).

Events on both days are free, but registration is required. For more information, contact the Jazz Studies office at pittjazz@pitt.edu or go to the website, jazz.pitt.edu.