Sunday 24 November 3.30 pm
+ panel discussion with Elizabeth Gezahegn-King (Africa Programme Manager at FORWARD), Rebecca Sesny (director, Still Fighting), and Kate Smurthwaite (Vice Chair of Abortion Rights). Chaired by Hannah Pool (journalist, curator, and Chair of UK Feminista).
The Cut UK PREMIERE
Beryl Magoko / Kenya and Uganda / 2012 / 43 mins / English, Kiswahili, and Kikuria with English subtitles
Blank Canvas UK PREMIERE
Sarah Berkovich / USA / 2011 / 4 mins / English
Still Fighting: The Story of Clinic Escorts WORLD PREMIERE
Rebecca Sesny / USA / 2013 / 13 mins / English
This session deals with practices and policies through which powers of society regulate women’s bodies, and the struggles to gain individual and social control of the body.
The Cut is an insightful documentary into the sensitive issue of female genital mutilation (FGM) in the director’s home village in Kuria, Kenya. The director’s familiarity with the location, and her intense research, enabled her to create a documentary with an intimate ambience and to get exceptionally close to the community. We hear from proponents and opponents of this deeply entrenched tradition, including young girls, elderly women, the people who perform the circumcisions, and activists.
In Blank Canvas Kim shares with us her personal journey through chemotherapy and the resulting struggles with body image, femininity, and confidence, after losing her hair. Kim takes an unconventional approach to dealing with her insecurities, and decides to turn the blank canvas of her scalp into a work of art, making a bold statement about being bald and giving her an opportunity to share her experiences with others.
Legislation enacted in many states across the USA, most recently in Texas, has restricted women’s legal access to abortion. Still Fighting: The Story of Clinic Escorts is a unique look at women’s access to abortion and focuses on Laurie and Zoe who volunteer as abortion clinic escorts trying to ensure patients’ safe arrival at the clinics. Laurie operates in conservative Mississippi where the last abortion clinic is under threat of closing its doors for good, whilst Zoe works in the seemingly liberal north east at a clinic in the Bronx where the threat of danger is just as high.