I saw the following three movies as part of the Environmental Film Festival
in DC last Friday, March 19th. They were each compelling views of
agriculture, and the role of women in the agriculture of India. I recommend
them to anyone with an interest in labor issues, women's rights, sustainable
agriculture, seed-saving and the role of multinational companies in the
international seed industry. The third film, Eternal Seed showed some
forceful juxtapositions of seed saving in traditional agriculture vs.
high-tech and biotech agriculture.
FROM the Environmental Film Festival web site
Kamala and Raji (USA, 1996, 46 min.) In Ahmedabad, India, two working women
struggle to make
their lives better, sometimes defying their husbands, the police, and a
tradition in which women are
still viewed as second-class citizens. Kamala, a young mother with an
abusive husband, and Raji, a
vegetable seller, become involved with the Self-Employed Women's
Association. Their personal
struggles have made them aware of the general plight of women in their
country. By Michael
Camerini and Shari Robertson.
Once This Land Was Ours (India, 1991, 19 min.) is a poetic documentary
agriculture workers in India and their struggle to provide for their
families. Although they work to
produce food for others, they have increasing difficulties feeding their
own children. By Shikha
Eternal Seed (India, 1996, 43 min.) With insightful interviews and rare
India's agricultural industry, this film depicts Indian women's
struggles to use traditional
farming practices instead of chemically-based agriculture. Comparing the
women who consider seeds sacred with multinational companies' use of
hybrids, this evocative analysis celebrates the scientific basis of
traditions in a look at the evolving meaning of healthy land use. By
Andy Clark, Ph.D.
c/o AFSIC, Room 304
National Agricultural Library
10301 Baltimore Ave.
Beltsville, MD 20705-2351
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