“Words on Water” (2002) Screening and Q&A With Film Maker Sanjay Kak“Words on Water” (2002) Screening and Q&A With Film Maker Sanjay Kakhttp://www.haverford.edu/calendar/details/113952Chase Auditorium2009-11-09T16:30:002009-11-09T18:00:00
November 9, 4:30PM–6:00PM
Noted Indian documentary film maker, Sanjay Kak, will screen his “Words on Water” (2002). The film explores the struggle of the people of the Narmada Valley against the big dams that will submerge their lands and displace them from their homes, traditions, and cultures.
About the film: “Words on Water” has been recognized by film festivals across the world for its moving depiction of non-violent resistance and environmental activism.
Shasan valo, sun lo aaj - Hamare gaon mein hamaara raaj (Listen to us, you who rule - our villages, we control). A boat carrying that cargo of defiance begins an urgent journey through the Narmada valley. For more than 15 years people of the valley have resisted a series of massive dams on their river, and in their struggle have exposed the deceptive heart of India’s development politics.
The struggle has forged unusual alliances. Adivasis in the hills, farmers from the Nimad plain, sand-quarriers and fishermen on the river, and middle-class activists. They are ranged against the powerful apparatus of this chosen model of development - Ministers, Magistrates, Police Commissioners, the World Bank, and in this era of privatization, multinational corporations.
This is a dialogue with authority that is usually conducted across barricades. But through the tumult and slogans, we make our way to the transactions between power and powerlessness, between truth and untruth. The film was shot over a period of two years, after the Supreme Court lifted the stay on the construction of the Sardar Sarovar dam, and pushed the resistance into its most critical phase.
In a world where the use of violence has become the arbiter of all political debate, "Words on Water" is about a sustained non-violent resistance, that almost joyous defiance, which empowers the people as they struggle for their rights, yet saves them from the ultimate humiliation of violence.
The screening will be followed by a Q&A with the film maker.
About Sanjay Kak: After attending the Delhi School of Economics, Sanjay Kak began making films relating to both his native India (“One Weapon”, “Harvest of Rain”) and the experiences of Indians abroad (“This Land, My Land, Eng-Land!”). Associated with both the Campaign Against Censorship in India and the Centre for Science & Environment, New Delhi, Kak is a filmmaker deeply concerned with social change.
Sponsored by the John B. Hurford ’60 Humanities Center's Leaves of Grass Fund and the Center for Peace and Global Citizenship
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