Translation/ Transmission: Women’s Activism Across Time and Space is nearly upon us!
We open on Sunday 9 March at 1pm with Calypso Rose: Lioness of the Jungle, directed by Pascale Obobo. The film will be preceded by a very special performance of Mento and Calypso songs from local singer Nia Melody.
An exuberant and inspiring ambassador for the Caribbean, Calypso Rose is the uncontested and much decorated diva of Calypso music. With more than 800 recorded songs, she continues to be a pioneer and champion of women’s rights, as she travels the world making music. French-Cameroonian filmmaker Pascale Obolo spends four years with Calypso Rose on a very personal journey. Travelling to Paris, New York, Trinidad and Tobago and to her ancestral home in Africa, we learn more about Calypso Rose in each place, and the many faces and facets of her life. The daughter of an illiterate Trinidadian fisherman, she was one of ten children, and was sent to live with relatives in Tobago at the age of 9. At 15 she wrote her first song and launched a career that took her to the top of the male-dominated calypso world. This creative film is not only about memory and the exchange and discovery of world cultures, but also about the journey of a remarkable woman, an Afro-Caribbean soul and an exemplary artist.
Tuesday 11 March, 6pm
We then move onto Ein El Hilweh, Kingdom of Women, directed by Dahna Abourahme, a film about the experience of Palestinian women in refugee camps in Lebanon, 1982-1984. The film showing will be followed by responses from Rita from the Palestinian Embassy Nakba Museum, Bristol.
The story of the women of Ein El Hilweh refugee camp between 1982 and 1984 is an important chapter in the history of Palestinian refugee women in Lebanon. After the Israeli invasion of Lebanon in 1982, the camp was destroyed and its men imprisoned. Kingdom of Women documents the organising spirit of women during this period – detailing how they were able to rebuild the camp and provide for their families while their men were held captive. Using animation and scenes from daily life as it moves between past and present, the film focuses on seven women, honoring the contributions they’ve made to the survival of the Palestinian community in exile.
You can buy tickets for the whole season from Watershed’s website. Don’t forget there is a special offer where you can buy four tickets and get the fifth one free.
Hope to see you at the film season!
Get ready for the screening of Audre Lorde: The Berlin Years 1984-1992 on March 18 at 6pm by listening to Audre reading her amazing essay ‘Uses of the Erotic: The Erotic as Power.’
Get your tickets here!
…is the best! You’ve never read her? Why not?!
‘What are the different intolerables from which we desire to flee? And how do we distinguish between those sites to which we must return and those from which we must flee entirely? What becomes of those who cannot flee, no matter how intolerable the conditions? In order to wrestle with these questions we would need to adopt as a daily practice, ways of being and relating, modes of analysing, and strategies of organising in which we constantly mobilize identification and solidarity, across all borders, as key elements in the repertoire of risks we need to take to see ourselves as part of one another, even in the context of difference. We would need to disappear the idiocy of “us” and “them” and its cultural relativist underpinnings, the belief that “it could never happen to us,” so that our very consciousness would be shaped by multiple histories and events, multiple geographies, multiple identifications.’
M. Jacqui Alexander (2005) ‘Remembering This Bridge Called My Back, Remembering Ourselves’ in Pedagogies of Crossing: Meditations on Feminism, Sexual Politics, Memory and the Sacred, Durham: Duke University Press, pp. 257-287, p. 265.
And check out these videos….
For immediate release:
Film Season Celebrating Women’s History month throughout March at Watershed
Over Women’s History Month in March 2014, Translation/ Transmission: Women’s Activism Across Time and Space will host seven screenings at Watershed, celebrating the diverse ways women activists have communicated their struggle through film. Well-received and less well-known films will be shown together for the first time in a season that explores the potential of film and feminist media to translate across the boundaries of language, genre, time and culture.
Translation/ Transmission features activist documentaries and women filmmakers from the Women’s Liberation Movement in Britain, Jamaica, Palestine, Germany, Vietnam, USA, Iran and France/ Cameroon, highlighting the diversity of different feminisms across geographical locations and historical moments.
Screenings will take place on Sundays at 1pm and Tuesdays at 6pm every week from 9th March.
The film season opens on 9th March at 1pm with a screening of Calypso Rose the Lioness of the Jungle, about the diva of Calypso music and pioneer of women’s rights, Calypso Rose. There will also be a singing performance from Nia Melody.
Kingdom of Women (2010) screens on 11th March. It tells the story of women from the Ein El Hilweh refugee camp in Lebanon and the screening will feature a response by Rita from the Bristol-based Palestinian Embassy and Nakba Museum. Rapunzel Let Down Your Hair (1978) and In Our Own Time (1981), two films from the Women’s Liberation Movement in Britain, screen on 16th March, with a response from Clarissa Jacob.
Audre Lorde The Berlin Years: 1984-1992 (2012), a film about the poet’s time spent in Berlin will be screened on 18th March alongside a video of Alexis Pauline Gumbs reading her letter to Lorde. Trinh T. Minh-ha’s personal documentary Surname Viet Given Name Nam (1989) will be shown on 23rd March, followed by a discussion led by cultural translation expert Dr Carol O’Sullivan.
A film from the Sistren Theatre Collective from Jamaica, Sweet Sugar Rage (1985) will be screened on 25th March. It will be followed by a response from Dr Gail Lewis. Screening on 30th March is Facing Mirrors (2011), set in contemporary Iran, the film is about a relationship between Rana, a traditional wife and Edi, who is transgender. Elhum Shakerifar, a documentary film maker, will offer her thoughts on this groundbreaking film.
Tickets available from Watershed’s website.
All tickets are £5.50 full/ £4.00 concessions or as part of the season, buy 4 Translation/ Transmission tickets and get a 5th free when bought in person or over the phone.
Translation/ Transmission is grateful to Watershed, Feminist Archive South, Intellect books and University of Bristol for their generous support of the film season.
With the film season just over a month away, we have now firmed up all the speakers.
Regrettably Dr Laleh Khalili will no longer be joining us to discuss the Kingdom of Women, but Rita and activists connected to the Palestinian Embassy and Nakba Museum will be.
Other confirmations include Dr Carol O’Sullivan, who has done a lot of research on cultural translation. She is going to help us discuss Surname Viet Given Name Nam.
US-based activist Alexis Pauline Gumbs is making a video recording of her letter to Audre Lorde especially for the film season. We are delighted to introduce the people of Bristol to her amazing activist work which is focused, among many other things, on the ‘resurrection’ of the ancestral spirits of inspirational black feminists.
Sue Peggs, who was part of the collective that originally made In Our Own Time, will join us to tell us her memories of the film.
Documentary filmmaker Elhum Shakerifar is joining us to reflect on Facing Mirrors.
Finally, we are super excited that Nia Melody will be joining us to perform a few songs before our screening of Calypso Rose on the 9 March to kick off the season!
The Translation/ Transmission theory reading group is less than a month away, so we thought it was a good idea to tell people what to expect, and how we are going to try to run it.
The group is meeting every Wednesday from 7-9pm throughout February and March at Hydra Books, 34 Old Market, Bristol.
The first meeting is Wednesday 5 February.
Our first readings will respond to interviews with film maker and theorist Trinh T. Minh-Ha,
We are screening Trinh’s film Surname Viet Given Name Nam (1989) on 23 March. Don’t forget you can buy your tickets now from Watershed’s website!
Each reading group will have two facilitators who will prepare a series of questions raised by the selected reading.
These questions will engage with the texts themselves, but we want to use our discussions to think about wider themes relating to translation and transmission.
How can these concepts help us to understand feminist cultural production, history, activism and theory across boundaries of time and space in different ways?
We hope that preparing questions will enable us to focus on specific aspects of the texts and help us to make the most of our time together.
We also hope that responsibility for creating questions will be taken by people attending the group in subsequent weeks.
We want to emphasise that no prior experience or knowledge is necessary to come and join the discussions, although you will need to have read the texts, copies are available on the website.
The reading group is free to attend although we will ask for a small donation to cover the cost of room hire.
Hope to see you there!
…you can buy them from Watershed’s website.
Ticket prices: £5.50 full / £4.00 concessions for all film showings.
There is also a special offer: Buy four Translation/Transmission tickets and get a fifth ticket FREE (please note offer cannot be bought online – to purchase please call Box Office on 0117 927 5100).
Check out the full programme.
Go get ’em!