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Women’s Cinema from Tangiers to Tehran

March 1, 2009 - April 22, 2009

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A Few Days Later . . ., March 1

A celebration of women filmmakers from North Africa and the Middle East, as well as the diaspora in Europe, this series represents a remarkable geographic, cultural, and stylistic range. In documentaries, features, and experimental works, the directors depict urban attitudes and rural traditions, the dream of escape and the isolation of exile, and the comforts and entrapments of family. But as James Neil, co-curator of the British series that inspired this one, has said, a common theme runs through the films: “They are about women who struggle and strive against their surroundings, and they’re directed by women who have had those experiences themselves.”

Director and actress Niki Karimi joins us on March 1 to present her films One Night and A Few Days Later . . . . Well known for her portrayals of forceful, independent women in such films as Sara (1993), Two Women (1999), and The Hidden Half (2001), she also assisted Iranian master Abbas Kiarostami on The Wind Will Carry Us and ABC Africa before going on to direct her own films. In advocating for what she calls “the kind of cinema which describes reality and which gets close to people’s daily lives without making compromises,” she speaks for many of the courageous women whose works are presented here.

Sunday, March 1, 2009
3:30 p.m. One Night
Niki Karimi (Iran, 2005). Niki Karimi in person.

Sunday, March 1, 2009
6:00 p.m. A Few Days Later . . .
Niki Karimi (Iran, 2006). Niki Karimi in person.

Saturday, March 7, 2009
6:00 p.m. The Silences of the Palace
Moufida Tlatli (Tunisia, 1994)

Thursday, March 12, 2009
6:30 p.m. An Egyptian Salad
Nadia Kamel (Egypt/France/Switzerland, 2007)

Sunday, March 22, 2009
2:00 p.m. I Am the One Who Brings Flowers to Her Grave
Hala Al-Abdallah, Ammar El-Beik (France/Syria, 2006)

Sunday, March 29, 2009
2:00 p.m. Immigrant Memories: The North African Experience
Yamina Benguigui (France, 1997)

Sunday, March 29, 2009
5:00 p.m. Inch’Allah Sunday
Yamina Benguigui (France, 2001)

Thursday, April 2, 2009
6:30 p.m. Our Heedless Wars
Randa Chahal Sabbag (France, 1995)

Thursday, April 2, 2009
7:50 p.m. The Kite
Randa Chahal Sabbag (Lebanon/France, 2003)

Friday, April 3, 2009
6:30 p.m. Journey to the Sun
Yesim Ustaoglu (Turkey/Germany, 1999)

Friday, April 10, 2009
6:30 p.m. A Door to the Sky
Farida Ben Lyazid (Morocco/Tunisia/France, 1989)

Sunday, April 12, 2009
2:00 p.m. Artists’ Films from Beirut to Tehran
Lida Abdul, Mireille Astore, Fabian Astore, Yto Barrada, Mona Hatoum, Lamia Joreige, Rosalind Nashashibi, Shirin Neshat, Zineb Sedira (1988–2006). Yto Barrada’s The Magician will be presented in the theater preceding the screening; doors open at 1:40 p.m.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009
6:30 p.m. The Day I Became a Woman
Marziyeh Meshkini (Iran, 2000)

Wednesday, April 22, 2009
8:15 p.m. Persepolis
Marjane Satrapi, Vincent Paronnaud (France, 2007)

Women’s Cinema from Tangiers to Tehran is a touring exhibition coordinated by ArteEast, a nonprofit arts organization based in New York that promotes the arts and cultures of the Middle East. For its original presentation in England, it was curated by James Neil and Suzy Gillett of Parallax Media and Institut Français. We wish to thank Suna Kafadar, coordinator of the tour, and Livia Alexander, executive director of ArteEast. Prints are part of the tour unless otherwise indicated.

At PFA, the series is coordinated by Kathy Geritz and cosponsored by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies at UC Berkeley. It is presented in conjunction with the yearlong interdisciplinary program Gender, Islam and the West, hosted by the Institute of European Studies (IES). Special thanks to Beverly Crawford, associate director, IES, and Noga Wizanksy, assistant director, National Resource Center for West European Studies. Gender, Islam and the West features academics, public intellectuals, activists, artists, and writers who will explore the relationship between Islam and Western secularism, particularly as it manifests itself in the lives of women. The full array of events is listed at ies.berkeley.edu/calendar/ssrc/.

Niki Karimi’s visit is presented in conjunction with the UC Berkeley Department of Gender and Women’s Studies and the Center for Middle Eastern Studies. Special thanks to Minoo Moallem, professor and chair of Gender and Women’s Studies.